The World

  • “Carousso’s Comments:” Repeal ObamaCare and Remove Government from Health Care Business

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    By Neil A. Carousso

    Two Republican senators announced their opposition to the “Better Care Reconciliation Act,” the Senate healthcare bill to repeal and replace the “Affordable Health Care Act,” known as ObamaCare, that has resulted in fewer options and premium increases across the board, including a 116 percent increase in premiums in Arizona last year. On average, premiums have doubled.

    Business Insider/Andy Kiersz, data from The Department of Health and Human Services
    Business Insider/Andy Kiersz, data from The Department of Health and Human Services

    Last night, Senators Jerry Moran (R-KS) and Mike Lee (R-UT) tweeted their opposition to the Senate Republicans’ proposal.

    After 7 and a half years of campaigning and promising “repeal and replace” of ObamaCare, the fate of that promise is hanging in the balance despite having majorities in both houses of Congress and a Republican president who is arguably working harder than anyone to negotiate a better healthcare deal for Americans while attempting to unify moderates and conservatives.

    President Donald J. Trump tweeted Monday night: “Republicans should just REPEAL failing ObamaCare now & work on a new Healthcare Plan that will start from a clean slate. Dems will join in!”

    This may be the only sensible option at this point.

    Senate Republicans passed a bill in December 2015 to repeal most of ObamaCare in a 52-47 vote. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), who also opposes the BCRA, and then-Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) voted “no” with the Democrats – the only two Republicans who opposed the bill that was dead on arrival when it hit former-President Barack Obama’s desk in the Oval Office.

    On Tuesday morning, President Trump tweeted: “With only a very small majority, the Republicans in the House & Senate need more victories next year since Dems totally obstruct, no votes!”

    I’m not sure the GOP deserves victories, though. While Democrats’ partisan, anti-Trump obstruction is impeding progress and sets a standard of unprecedented division and so-called “resistance,” Republicans have been weak in passing the legislative agenda that was voted for on November 8, 2016.

    That is why “Drain the Swamp” was a message that resonated through the heartland of America with Americans frustrated over the gridlock in Washington and broken campaign promises. Americans deserve better from their government officials. The fact remains, the only “politician” who is not receiving funds and lobbying from special interests is the President.

    The Chief Executive also tweeted Tuesday in favor of changing the Senate rules to pass healthcare legislation.

    Using the so-called “nuclear option” will hurt Republicans, in my opinion, if and when Democrats control Congress in the future.

    The nuclear option was first invoked by then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) in 2013 to expedite the confirmations of Obama’s judiciary nominees. In April of this year, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) used it to the Republicans’ advantage in confirming Constitutionalist Justice Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.

    Democrats are good at passing legislation and moving the country left through judiciary confirmations and laws. Republicans are divided among the moderate and conservative facets of the Party. It is incumbent upon the GOP to use the rules of the Senate, as is, to do their jobs that they were voted to perform by the citizens of the United States.

    On the Senate floor Tuesday morning, McConnell said the Senate will vote on the repeal legislation from 2015. “President Obama vetoed it then. President Trump will sign it now.”

    The U.S. Government should have never been in the business of healthcare. At this point, the most viable option for the GOP would be to repeal the mess of ObamaCare and alleviate middle class Americans and small business owners of the outrageous taxes and mandates.

    Then, the GOP should work on small bills to fix minor problems, not one-size-fits-all legislation that moves us towards socialist, single-payer healthcare, supported by Democrats, that would undoubtedly result in longer wait times than veterans experience at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

    The free market, not politicians driven by special interests, should dictate healthcare costs through competition, health savings accounts and individual and family choices.

     

    Featured Image: President Donald Trump, flanked by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentiucky, left, and House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, speaks during a meeting with House and Senate leadership on Wednesday, March 1, 2017 at The White House in Washington, D.C. (Evan Vucci/AP)

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  • Supporting Our Veterans: President Trump Signs VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act

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    By Neil A. Carousso

    President Donald J. Trump​ signed the Department of Veterans Affairs Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017 on Friday morning in The White House East Room. It’s a long-overdue promise kept by a Commander-In-Chief who truly has the heart and respect for all those who serve bravely and proudly so that we, U.S. citizens can enjoy the benefits of freedom.

    The law repairs the Department of Veterans Affairs government agency that provides health care and other services to millions of U.S. veterans. The bill was prompted by a scandal at the Phoenix VA medical center where some veterans died waiting for care while on secret wait lists and some were prescribed the wrong medications.

    A VA accountability measure passed the House in 2014 but it met its fate in the Senate while former-President Barack Obama threatened to veto the bill if it went to his desk, siding with the unions that represent VA employees.

    Pete Hegseth, a U.S. Army veteran and co-host of Fox News Channel’s top-rated morning show “Fox & Friends,” collaborated on the VA accountability bill over several years to ensure veterans receive the care they deserve without lengthy weight times and poor health care caused by government bureaucracy.

    What’s In the Law:

    The legislation would cut the 30-day advance notice to 10 days. It advances the appeals process that employees use to appeal any disciplinary action against them. It also reduces the evidentiary standards required to terminate an employee and it allows the VA secretary to recoup bonuses and relocation expenses in certain situations.

    “Under the current disciplinary process, it takes an average 51 days to remove an employee, largely due to a 30-day notice period,” said VA Secretary Dr. David J. Shulkin.

    It also allows the VA secretary to directly appoint directors to lead VA hospitals and integrated service networks, instead of going through lengthy hiring processes. There are approximately 350,000 employees in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

    True to the law’s name, it will give protection to employees who disclose poor practices and criminal activity at VA hospitals.

    U.S AIR FORCE VETERAN AND RAPE SURVIVOR KYUNG JONES SHARES HER EMOTIONAL STORY AND EXPLAINS WHY SHE SUPPORTS DONALD TRUMP

    On March 30, Fox News reported on retaliation at the Missouri VA in which Dr. Dale Klein was punished for speaking out about long wait times at the VA hospital. Dr. Klein, a highly rated pain management specialist at the Southeast Missouri John J. Pershing VA, is being paid $250,000 a year to sit in his office and do nothing. The government prevented him from seeing veteran patients in need after serving our country because the doctor revealed sinful practices at the Missouri VA.

    Stars and Stripes​ published a story on June 21 about U.S. Army​ Veteran Mike Verardo who lost a leg and an arm in an IED blast in Afghanistan in 2010. After receiving treatment at military hospitals, which included over 100 surgeries, he returned home in 2013, but “waited 57 days for his prosthetic to be repaired, with no backup, and even longer for a neurological appointment.”

    VA Secretary David Shulkin and U.S. Army Veteran Sgt. Mike Verado discuss the newly-signed VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act at The White House Courtesy: Sara Cook, NHK News)
    VA Secretary David Shulkin and U.S. Army Veteran Sgt. Mike Verardo discuss the newly-signed VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act at The White House (Courtesy: Sara Cook, NHK News)

    Sergeant Verardo and his wife, Sarah, were present for Friday’s signing at The White House and was introduced by Secretary Shulkin. Verardo shared his emotional story at the East Room podium and thanked President Trump for his leadership in listening and acting on veterans’ needs. Verardo criticized the Obama Administration for turning a blind eye to soldiers who returned to the U.S.

    President Trump gave Mr. Verardo the pen he used to sign the bill into law.

    The Verardos sat in Mr. Trump’s VIP box with the Trump family during the Republican National Convention in Cleveland last July. The New York Times featured Verardo in a story about vets who supported Trump for president.

    President Trump shakes hands with retired U.S. Army Sgt. Michael Verardo, during the President's remarks in the East Room of the White House, prior to signing the Department of Veterans Affairs Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017. (Courtesy: The White House)
    President Trump shakes hands with retired U.S. Army Sgt. Michael Verardo, during the President’s remarks in the East Room of the White House, prior to signing the Department of Veterans Affairs Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017. (Courtesy: The White House)
    President Trump signs the VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act into law in the East Room of The White House. U.S. Army Veteran Sgt. Mike Verado and his wife, Sarah, stand behind Mr. Trump. Courtesy: The White House)
    President Trump signs the VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act into law in the East Room of The White House. U.S. Army Veteran Sgt. Mike Verardo and his wife, Sarah, (far left) stand behind Mr. Trump. (Courtesy: The White House)

    The Verardos also stood beside Trump at The White House in April when the Commander-In-Chief signed an executive order creating a new office at the VA to find and remove incompetent and immoral workers.

    Alarming Veterans Statistics:

    In 2013, the Department of Veterans Affairs released a study that covered suicides from 1999 to 2010, which showed that roughly 22 veterans were dying by suicide per day, or one every 65 minutes. Some sources suggest that this rate may be undercounting suicides.

    WALKING IN AN ARMY VETERAN’S SHOES

    In 2014, an average of 20 veterans died from suicide each day. 6 of the 20 were users of VA services, according to Veterans Affairs. Vets accounted for 18 percent of all deaths from suicide among U.S. adults in 2014, while veterans constituted 8.5 percent of the U.S. population. In 2010, Veterans accounted for 22 percent of all deaths from suicide and 9.7 percent of the population.

    There is continued evidence of high burden of suicide among middle-aged and older adult veterans. In 2014, approximately 65 percent of all vets who died from suicide were aged 50 years or older. There’s also a correlation between age of veterans and homelessness that is on the rise.

    The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs releases statistics on homelessness among the veterans population.
    The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs releases statistics on homelessness among the veteran population.

    President Trump Keeps His Promise:

    As a candidate, Mr. Trump promised to fire VA employees “who let our veterans down.” Secretary Shulkin has touted the VA Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act bill.

    “So to every veteran who is here with us today, I just want to say two very simple words:  Thank you.  Thank you. Thank you.  You are the warriors and heroes who have won our freedom and we will never forget what you have done for all of us, ever.” – President Donald J. Trump, The White House, June 23, 2017 

    The bill cleared the House last week by a vote of 368-55, and passed the Senate unanimously by a voice vote.

    U.S. ARMY COMBAT VET SHARES HIS EMOTIONAL STORY OF SERVICE

    President Trump hugs Christian Jacobs, 6, at the grave of his father in Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA on May 29. Christian joins his mother, Brittany, every year for Memorial Day. (U.S. Army photo by Elizabeth Fraser/Arlington National Cemetery/released)
    6-year-old Christian Jacobs hugs President Trump at his father’s grave in Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA on May 29. Christian joins his mother, Brittany, every year for Memorial Day. (U.S. Army photo by Elizabeth Fraser/Arlington National Cemetery/released)

    In April, President Trump signed bipartisan legislation, eliminating an expiration measure enacted by the 2014 Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act. It ensures that veterans do not have to travel long distances to receive care at VA hospitals, and it expands the private-sector health program for vets. It also authorizes the sharing of certain medical records across the governmental and private sector health care systems. Mr. Trump promised that those who serve our country would be able to receive health care at any U.S. hospital – private or public – at the government’s expense and by signing this executive order, President Trump kept that campaign promise.

    In June, President Trump approved a measure giving priority for federal grants to those federal and state law enforcement agencies that hire and train veterans.

    According to CNN exit polls, veterans voted at a 2-1 ratio for Mr. Trump over Democrat opponent Hillary Clinton. In Ohio, North Carolina and Florida, battleground states rich with military history, several counties voted for Trump at higher numbers than GOP candidates John McCain and Mitt Romney had over former-President Obama in 2008 and 2012.

     

    Featured Image: U.S. President Donald Trump holds up the bill after signing the Department of Veterans Affairs Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017, on June 23, 2017, in the East Room of the White House in Washington, DC. (Mandel Ngan—AFP/Getty Images)

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  • Comey Testifies: No Collusion, No Pressure to End Russia Investigation, No Votes Changed, Trump Not Under Investigation and Leaking Admission

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    By Neil A. Carousso

    Former FBI Director James Comey testified in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee, and national television, on Thursday, providing insight into his side of the story as it relates to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s correspondence with President Donald J. Trump.

    Comey divulged he leaked the memos he wrote about his conversations with President Trump to the media. He said he decided to leak his memos to the press via a third-party friend, a “professor at Columbia Law School,” later identified as Daniel Richman, after waking up in the middle of the night worried that his side of the story would not get out in the public sphere. The disgraced ex-FBI Director felt it was his obligation, like other Washington, D.C. political actors who leak, to release this information which is being debated as official, sensitive U.S. Government information and personal notes. This is also raising credibility concerns that Comey could have been leaking classified information throughout his tenure to fit a personal agenda, like politicians do anonymously to hurt political opponents or push a political narrative.

    Comey said he hoped that by leaking his own memos a special counsel would be appointed. A special counsel, headed by former FBI Director Robert Mueller, was appointed by the Justice Department on May 17 to ensure independence over the investigation into Russia interference of the U.S. election. President Trump had fired Comey 8 days earlier.

    Despite Comey's testimony, the department sent a memo to Comey on March 2 noting that Sessions had recused himself because of his support for President Trump during the campaign. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
    Despite Comey’s testimony, the department sent a memo to Comey on March 2 noting that Sessions had recused himself because of his support for President Trump during the campaign. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

    During the hearing, Comey claimed that he never saw any memoranda regarding Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ recusal from all matters involving the investigation into Russian interference of the election and any possible relation with the Trump campaign. However, the Department of Justice released a statement Thursday evening accusing the ex-FBI head of providing false testimony. DOJ Spokesman Ian Prior wrote that Comey received an email on March 2, attached on the Justice Department site, “specifically informing Mr. Comey and other relevant Department officials of the recusal and its parameters, and advising that each of them instruct their staff ‘not to brief the Attorney General *** about, or otherwise involve the Attorney General *** in, any such matters described.'”

    Ironically, the only thing that wasn’t leaked to media, as Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) pointed out in the hearing, that was discussed in Comey’s testimony was that there has never been an investigation of Mr. Trump. Comey confirmed he told President Trump that he was not under investigation on three separate occasions, as Trump wrote in his letter of termination. Comey also established many media reports chronicling the investigation into Russia interference in the last U.S. election have been false.

    As all intelligence chiefs have confirmed under oath, Comey reiterated that there is no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. The ex-FBI Director also said, like all other intelligence officers, he never felt pressure to end the investigation. To the contrary, Comey revealed President Trump encouraged him to pursue the facts of whether or not Trump’s campaign officials communicated inappropriately and/or illegally with Russian officials. Mr. Trump wanted the investigation to be conducted independently, accurately and swiftly.

    In 2004, Comey and Justice Department officials threatened to resign over a dispute about former President George W. Bush’s surveillance program. Comey said he never considered resigning from his post under the Trump Administration despite the “awkward” conversations and disagreements he had with the President – most of which has been publicized after Comey was fired.

    The ex-FBI leader said former Attorney General Loretta Lynch, an Obama appointee, directed him to call the criminal investigation into 2016 Democrat Party presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s private email server a “matter.” The FBI director reports directly to the attorney general and both serve at the pleasure of the president.

    Comey made a public announcement on July 5, 2016 highlighting the crimes Mrs. Clinton committed but concluded that “no reasonable prosecutor” would take the case, relieving Attorney General Lynch of making a tough decision on prosecuting the Democratic nominee days after meeting with her husband, former President Bill Clinton, on the Phoenix tarmac while his wife was under a criminal investigation.

    Despite his concerns about Obama Administration officials, Comey only took notes on Mr. Trump and did not pursue a special counsel appointment for the Clinton investigation.

    240 Character Commentary and Analysis:

    3.6 million Tweets were sent between 7 AM-1:30 PM ET, discussing former FBI Director Comey’s testimony to the Senate Intelligence Committee. Here, we compile a series of facts, intelligent comments, perceptive analyses and statements stemming from Thursday’s hearing in reverse chronological order, starting with President Trump’s reaction on Twitter on Friday morning.

    Flashback: Comey Says Trump Never Obstructed Justice

    Former FBI Director Comey says President Trump never obstructed justice.

    On Thursday, the ex-FBI director added there is no evidence of collusion between Trump and Russia. Comey has also said, Trump and his team have not impeded the investigation.

    All intelligence officials and politicians from both parties have concluded there is no evidence of collusion or change of votes at the ballots on November 8, 2016.

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  • James Comey Will Not Say Trump Obstructed Justice, Still No Evidence of Collusion with Russia

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    By Neil A. Carousso

    Former FBI Director James Comey says President Donald J. Trump never obstructed justice. ABC News reports exclusively that Comey “will stop short of saying Trump obstructed justice.”

    On Thursday, it is expected the disgraced ex-FBI director will murk the waters without providing any evidence of collusion between Trump and Russia because he has testified under oath that there is none. Comey has also said, Trump and his team have not impeded the investigation.

    And as a point of clarity: All intelligence officials and politicians from both parties have concluded there is no evidence of collusion or change of votes at the ballots on November 8, 2016.

    Wednesday, a day before Comey’s highly anticipated trip to Capitol Hill, U.S. investigators said President Trump and the White House did not pressure them in any way regarding the Russia investigation. Media reports relying on unnamed sources had said otherwise.

    Last July, Comey revealed the laws that Hillary Clinton broke by illegally using a private email server. He then went above his duty to say that “no reasonable prosecutor” would pursue criminal charges. This abnormal press conference occurred three days after former Attorney General Loretta Lynch met President Bill Clinton on the Phoenix tarmac to discuss “grandkids.”

    Lynch refused to recuse herself from the investigation, rather said she would take Comey’s recommendation, putting the onus of the Clinton investigations on someone who has inserted himself into the public political conversation since former President Barack Obama appointed him to the post.

    President Trump fired Comey, which he has the unfettered Constitutional authority to do. What has followed has been a series of insider leaks and stories portraying Comey as a victim. The New York Times even published a report that Comey wrote memos contrary to his public testimony that allegedly shows Trump tried to influence the investigation. The Times did not even read the memos for itself, publishing unverified claims.

    Now, House and Senate Intelligence Committees want to view all memos, if it exists, going back to the Obama Administration that could shed light on Comey’s decisions not to prosecute Clinton or pursue the IRS targeting scandal even leakers and any insight into Comey’s relationship with President Trump.

    The long-term fallout from this entire politicization of intelligence is the lack of trust with our allies in terms of intelligence sharing that is essential to preventing terror attacks. A mantra in World War II is “loose lips sink ships,” meaning our intelligence is critical to our national security advantages. Leaking and politicizing intelligence will put us at a disadvantaged position to prevent attacks, even cyber, on our nation especially when it involves ongoing investigations. Furthermore, glorification of leaking will harm U.S. national security by encouraging more traitors to leak classified information for what they deem justifiable such as bringing down our President.

     

    Featured Image Courtesy: Andrew Harrer-Pool/Getty Images.

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  • Washington Establishment, Media Hypocritically Using Russia Narrative to Bring Down Trump While Political Noise Leaves Americans Misinformed

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    By Neil A. Carousso

    President Donald J. Trump has vowed to “drain the swamp,” but the swamp is fighting back against the Washington outsider.

    Establishment politicians and the media are calling for President Trump’s head after unnamed sources in a Washington Post story claim the Commander-In-Chief gave classified information to the Russian ambassador at The White House last week.

    National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster defended the Trump Administration Tuesday after a Washington Post story, citing unnamed sources alleges Trump gave classified information to Russia. (Associated Press Photo)
    National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster defended the Trump Administration Tuesday after a Washington Post story, citing unnamed sources alleges Trump gave classified information to Russia. (Associated Press Photo)

    National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster gave an on-camera briefing at The White House today, saying, “The premise of that article is false.” McMaster repeated that President Trump’s interactions with the Russian ambassador last week in the Oval Office were “wholly appropriate” in the topics and information discussed.

    President Trump tweeted this morning that he wants Russia to “step up their fight against ISIS and terrorism.”

    McMaster and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson informed the media Monday that “sources and methods” for defeating the Islamic State were not revealed to Russia.

    Let’s be clear: The President has the absolute right to declassify intelligence. He may declassify any intelligence he wants, according to the Chief Executive’s Constitutional authority. In fact, it is common practice for presidents to share classified information with foreign leaders when it may assist in a foreign policy goal.

    Therefore, President Trump cannot be impeached, if the story turns out to be true; Mr. Trump also cannot be impeached for firing the FBI director, as he has the unfettered Constitutional authority to do so, much to the dismay of his critics.

    Israel was the source of intelligence that Trump allegedly gave to Russia last week, according to The New York Times. The Associated Press reported Tuesday morning that a European official claims that if the Washington Post report is accurate, they may not feel comfortable sharing valuable national security intelligence that saves American lives with President Trump.

    The Commander-In-Chief will embark on his first Middle East on Friday where he will meet with Muslim leaders, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Pope Francis at The Vatican.

    What is alarming here is that, according to the Washington Post, unelected Washington bureaucrats including White House officials and intelligence officials leaked classified information to the press – a felony of the Espionage Act. Leaking out of Washington, D.C. is nothing new, but it is a serious offense and it causes severe damage to our national security and key diplomatic relationships.

    In February, the Washington Post relied on an unnamed source, potentially from the intelligence community, who said President Trump had a combative phone call with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. Both Trump and Turnbull denied having a contentious phone call through statements, and recently, in person when the two met in New York City to commemorate the 75th anniversary of an important World War II naval battle.

    The larger point is that conversations between a U.S. President and foreign leaders are highly sensitive and should never be illegally leaked to the press, no matter the substance or optics, which the media latches on to frame Washington gossip scenarios. Few people in the White House and the intelligence community have access to Oval Office meetings.

    Instead of telling both sides of the story and letting the American people make up their minds, the media has been rushing to put out unbalanced information, without context, in an effort to destroy President Trump and give voice to the critics who have been calling for impeachment since before the inauguration.

    James Comey says "no reasonable prosecutor" would pursue charges against Hillary Clinton despite laying out a case of illegalities and saying the former Secretary of State was "extremely careless" in handling top secret, special access program classified materials. (Associated Press Photo)
    Ex-FBI Director James Comey says “no reasonable prosecutor” would pursue charges against Hillary Clinton despite laying out a case of illegalities and saying the former Secretary of State was “extremely careless” in handling top secret, special access program classified materials. (Associated Press Photo)

    Some are comparing this unverified incident to Hillary Clinton’s illegal use of a private email server, but that is misleading. Mrs. Clinton has never been the President of the United States who is the only person who can declassify intelligence on his own. As former-FBI Director James Comey revealed on July 5, 2016, the ex-Secretary of State broke the law by using the server for classified information with foreign actors “likely” to have gotten hold of American secrets, and deleting 33,000 emails. Clinton also gave U.S. Department of State access to foreign human rights violators.

    Unlike President Trump’s alleged revelations to Russia about the U.S. fight against the Islamic State, former-President Barack Hussein Obama ordered U.S. intelligence officials to share classified information with the communist regime Cuba – one of America’s biggest espionage threats.

    While President Trump’s ambitious policy platform includes “eradicating ISIS” and working with any country that will join the U.S. in defeating the radical ideology that is a global threat, politicians, pundits and journalists are quick to run with flashy “scandalous” stories without the full scope or understanding of a story. In this era of instant gratification, it is more important than ever to take a step back and critically pick apart every angle of the story, which is not happening.

    There are many in Washington, and in the media, who do not believe Mr. Trump is worthy of the Office of the President have been running wild trying to play “gotcha” games to undermine President Trump, which is having an adverse effect of separating the elitists and regular Americans who care about their money, their healthcare and their safety.

    Instead, Washington Post “journalists” literally applauded the unbalanced report because it broke their newspaper’s record for total reads that was previously held by the NBC-leaked “Access Hollywood” video tape that revealed off-camera remarks by Mr. Trump in 2005. The leaked tape was intended to bring down Trump’s run for the White House, days before the second presidential debate in October. The Post’s Glenn Kessler tweeted Monday: “Applause in the newsroom as the Russia-leak scoop breaks the Hollywood Access record for most readers per minute.”

    Frankly, there is too much noise and too many unsourced allegations for Americans to digest.

    Tuesday evening, The New York Times published a story, citing a February memo written by Comey that said President Trump asked the former FBI director to end an investigation into former-National Security Advisor Michael Flynn. The New York Times reporters did not read the memo for themselves; they quoted people who allegedly saw the memo. NBC News, in reporting on The New York Times story, wrote their reporters did not read the memo, either. The standards of journalism dramatically changed when journalists felt it was their duty to prevent Trump from winning the presidency, instead of just reporting facts and policy positions without editorial.

    The unverified story has been denied by The White House in a statement.

    “While the president has repeatedly expressed his view that General Flynn is a decent man who served and protected our country, the president has never asked Mr. Comey or anyone else to end any investigation, including any investigation involving General Flynn. The president has the utmost respect for our law enforcement agencies, and all investigations. This is not a truthful or accurate portrayal of the conversation between the president and Mr. Comey.” – White House Statement on The New York Times story “Comey Memo Says Trump Asked Him to End Flynn Investigation”

    Comey has refused to speak with Congressional intelligence oversight committees in private. Under oath, the former FBI director has refused to answer questions in which answers would reveal classified information to the public.

    Democrats like Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) are calling for Trump’s impeachment based on unverified stories, claiming the President obstructed justice. Trump’s critics have been calling for his impeachment since before the January 20 inauguration.

    Meanwhile, former-President Obama made numerous public comments claiming Mrs. Clinton did not commit a crime. Obama also publicly denied the Internal Revenue Service illegally targeted conservative groups that applied for tax-exempt status during the 2012 election. Public documents and statements by former-Exempt Organizations Unit Director of the IRS Lois Lerner contradict Obama’s comments on the IRS scandal. Republicans believed Obama obstructed justice in both situations.

    Former-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has said under oath, “There is no evidence of collusion between Trump and Russia.”

    The ongoing, lengthy investigation is being played out in the public instead of in private by FBI investigators. The crimes we know of are apparently not being investigated: illegal leaking to the media, illegally leaking unmasked names in intelligence reports and Mrs. Clinton’s crimes that have publicly been announced.

    The time is overdue to support the President and return credibility to the intelligence agencies and the rule of law without politicizing everything out of Washington because it fits an ideological agenda of “resistance” and bringing down a duly elected President. Without ever giving Mr. Trump a chance, he has been held to a different, unreachable standard than any politician in American history. If Trump committed a crime, he’d be impeached by now.

    Journalists and news organizations need to check their biases and agendas at the door and fairly and truthfully interpret the law and the Administration’s policies while citing reputable, named sources.

    Unnamed sources should be the exception, not the norm. Illegal activities such as leaking should not be glorified in the mainstream media and should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

     

    Featured Image Courtesy of the Russian Foreign Ministry via Getty Images. President Trump met with Sergey Lavrov, minister of foreign affairs of Russia, and Sergey Kislyak, Russian ambassador to the U.S. on May 10.

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