IN TODAY’S EDITION
- The FBI’s impartiality is seriously questionable amidst new revelations.
- The Supreme Court rebukes activist judges.
- Average Americans hear Trump much differently than elites do.
- While we debate tax cuts, keep in mind that wasteful spending is a huge problem.
- Obama’s climate change dogma is endlessly frustrating.
- The ACLU joins in celebrating Kaepernick’s grandstanding.
- Plus our Daily Features: Top Headlines, Memes, Cartoons, Columnists and Short Cuts.
“In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.” —Thomas Jefferson (1798)
By Nate Jackson
The FBI’s investigations into Hillary Clinton’s private email server and Donald Trump’s alleged “collusion” with Russia were far from impartial. But we already knew that. What is new is the revelation that Peter Strzok, who was removed from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s staff earlier this year, was basically a shill for the Clinton campaign. For starters, he sent anti-Trump texts to his colleague/mistress during the investigations. His removal was reported in August; the texts were hidden until now, despite a House subpoena that should have unearthed them.
Who is Strzok? The Wall Street Journal explains:
This is all the more notable because Mr. Strzok was a chief lieutenant to former FBI Director James Comey and played a lead role investigating alleged coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election. Mr. Mueller then gave him a top role in his special-counsel probe. And before all this Mr. Strzok led the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails and sat in on the interview she gave to the FBI shortly before Mr. Comey publicly exonerated her in violation of Justice Department practice.
Oh, and the woman with whom he supposedly exchanged anti-Trump texts, FBI lawyer Lisa Page, worked for both Mr. Mueller and deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe, who was accused of a conflict of interest in the Clinton probe when it came out that Clinton allies had donated to the political campaign of Mr. McCabe’s wife.
But wait; there’s more. Strzok was one of two FBI agents who interviewed Michael Flynn on Jan. 24. That would be the same Flynn who’s now guilty of lying to the FBI. Strzok also interviewed Clinton aides Huma Abedin and Cheryl Mills. They too lied to the FBI and … nothing happened.
As if that weren’t enough, we’ve learned that Strzok was the one responsible for editing key language in a memo by James Comey. What Comey originally called Clinton’s “grossly negligent” behavior — language specific to the statute Clinton violated — Strzok revised to read “extremely careless.” That’s a clear pander to Clinton, who admitted she was “careless” but denied anything worse. The watered-down language gave Comey the needed rationale for exonerating her — you know, shortly after Bill Clinton met Loretta Lynch on that Phoenix tarmac.
The investigation into Trump’s supposed collusion is turning into a probe about obstruction of justice. But, between the role of the fake Clinton-funded dossier in getting the FBI’s investigative ball rolling in the first place and the increasingly obvious conflicts of interest and political preferences of lead investigators, it may be that the real obstruction occurred at the Bureau.
In other news, Mueller has subpoenaed some of Trump’s bank records, perhaps crossing a line that Trump once painted red. This could get even more interesting quickly.
By Thomas Gallatin
In a 7-2 decision Monday, the Supreme Court stayed a block imposed by judges in Hawaii and Maryland against Donald Trump’s executive order temporarily banning travel from six majority-Muslim countries, as well as North Korea and Venezuela. In its ruling SCOTUS pressed both the Fourth and Ninth Circuit Courts to expedite their decisions on challenges that have been raised against Trump’s executive order. In the meantime, the travel ban will once again go into effect without restrictions. The ban is one thing; the judicial rebuke is another, which we’ll come back to.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions responded to SCOTUS’ decision, stating, “[This is] a substantial victory for the safety and security of the American people. We are pleased to have defended this order and heartened that a clear majority Supreme Court has allowed the President’s lawful proclamation protecting our country’s national security to go into full effect. The Constitution gives the President the responsibility and power to protect this country from all threats foreign and domestic, and this order remains vital to accomplishing those goals.”
Solicitor General Noel Francisco defended the legality of and need for Trump’s order, saying, “[It is a] comprehensive, worldwide review of the information shared by foreign governments that is used to screen aliens seeking entry to the United States. Based on that review, the Proclamation adopts tailored entry restrictions to address extensive findings that a handful of particular foreign governments have deficient information-sharing and identity-management practices, or other risk factors.”
The specifics of the ban, however, are almost incidental. SCOTUS’ decision is a win for the Rule of Law that also serves as a rebuke against activist judges. The High Court rarely intervenes when appellate courts are still considering cases, but did so here because disdain for a president or his policies is not justification for judges to ignore the law.
FBI agent fired from Russia probe oversaw Flynn interviews, softened Comey language on Clinton email actions (Fox News)
Collins doubles funding ask for ObamaCare bill (The Hill)
Democrat Rep. John Conyers announces retirement amidst sexual harassment allegations, endorses son to run for seat (CBS News)
Former Democrat U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown sentenced to five years in prison (The Florida Times-Union)
President Donald Trump shaved some two million acres from two national monuments in Utah (The Salt Lake Tribune)
Trump pulls United States out of UN immigration deal (The Washington Free Beacon)
RNC to support Roy Moore in Senate race in Alabama, weeks after cutting ties with his campaign (The Washington Post)
Global temperature increases are lower and slower, says new study (Reason)
ABC News president: Brian Ross will no longer cover stories related to Trump (Hot Air)
Humor: ABC News reports Trump nuked entire world, later clarifies he just microwaved a burrito (The Babylon Bee)
Policy: Consumers, not government, should decide If CVS-Aetna merger is a good idea (Investor’s Business Daily)
Policy: America’s “flyover country” is stronger than you think (City Journal)
For more of today’s news, visit Patriot Headline Report.
By Robin Smith
Have you been hearing the breathless media complaints and the DC political apparatus gasp out the latest narrative that the “new normal” of Washington is chaos, dysfunction and distrust, all while blaming Donald Trump and his supporters?
Just last weekend, Mike Murphy, GOP strategist and former Jeb Bush employee, trumpeted on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that “We’re living through the first screwball presidency in American History!” As he argued on that the “careening” in DC of an out-of-control presidency has instilled fear, he tipped his hand.
If you listened on, you heard from whence the concerns and pleadings he’s heard originate: the “professionals” who lost the November 2016 election. “The Republicans I’ve talked to privately, the professional pols, are terrified,” Murphy said. “They think there’s a chaos factor, to quote Jeb Bush who predicted all this.”
So, it’s not just Hillary Clinton and the angry Left who cannot accept failure and loss of the presidential election. Well, there’s a reason the average American abandoned the decorum and stale predictability of the quadrennial campaign to say, “You’re all fired!”
Is there a new normal? If so, is it really bad or unwanted by the average American? Let’s follow a few pieces of evidence that prove, yes, there’s a new normal. However, it’s only bad to the elitist keepers of the status quo, who have been and are being repeatedly rejected despite their polished résumés.
Is Donald Trump always right? No. Is President Trump at times a jerk? Yes. But is Trump right on policy that reflects the reasons he won — securing the southern border and reducing illegal immigration, cutting and reforming taxes, destroying the chokehold of red-tape around the necks of businesses large and small, appointing originalist judges up and down the federal court system, and halting the foreign policy and national security approach of leading from behind? Why, yes, he sure is.
So, Trump’s big offense is that he has unsettled a great number of people by brutalizing the symbolic niceties of the Swamp creatures.
His infamous Twitter account, with 44 million followers of @RealDonaldTrump and another 21.3 million followers of @POTUS, places President Donald Trump in direct contact with voters, protesters, the media, America’s allies and enemies, alike, and the public at large. So, last week, for example, when Trump “retweeted” videos showing Muslims in the United Kingdom engaged in violence and anti-social behavior that another Twitter user had shared and linked with comment, it became a global incident with the UK’s Prime Minister Theresa May. She responded defensively, condemning Trump for stoking “hatred and mistrust.”
The average American, however, saw what Trump shared: Three videos capturing Muslims assaulting people, specifically a young man on crutches in one video, and smashing a statue of the Virgin Mary in another. Elitists within the professional political world lit the prairie fire declaring racism, bigotry and division, with no comment on the actual deeds shown in the videos.
Meanwhile, following Thursday night’s shocking verdict in the Kate Steinle murder trial in San Francisco — a sanctuary city that released the offending illegal immigrant who’d been charged previously with seven felonies and deported from the U.S. five different times before he caused the death of an innocent American — Trump spoke directly to America and said what most Americans were thinking.
@RealDonaldTrump first posted, “A disgraceful verdict in the Kate Steinle case! No wonder the people of our Country are so angry with Illegal Immigration” the evening of the verdict. The next morning, Trump added, “His exoneration is a complete travesty of justice. BUILD THE WALL!”
The average American read and understood the exact sentiments of logic coming from the president. The only statements dripping of racism or prejudice were coming from the mouthpieces of the Left.
There are at least two other recent evidences that Trump’s untraditional access to the public may create “chaos” for those protecting the Swamp homeostasis, but the average American hears what they’re already thinking. First is the case of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s aggressive moves to prosecute retired Lt. General Michael Flynn, who very briefly served as Trump’s national security advisor post-election and admittedly lied to the FBI for reasons still unknown to the public. As the investigation strains to unearth a single shred of evidence that candidate Donald Trump colluded with the Russians, Americans understand that those who lie to the FBI should be prosecuted. But what about the legal gymnastics performed by the FBI, Justice Department and Barack Obama to minimize the mishandling of classified documents and documented lies of Hillary Clinton for months?
Again, the average American sees the injustice of one being protected for egregious criminal behavior while the other is publicly crucified for a process crime. As Trump put it, “Hillary Clinton lied many times to the FBI and nothing happened to her. Flynn lied and they destroyed his life. I think it’s a shame.”
Finally, the Alabama special election for U.S. Senate provides a clear demonstration that the average American, once again, sees through the bias and hit-jobs at the hands of the press.
The March 2008 edition of the Digital Journal chronicles the timeline of Roy Moore’s alleged relationships with under-aged girls to be during the same time he was twice running as a Democrat for public office in Gadsden, Alabama. Yet after 38 years and multiple election cycles, these charges are just now surfacing with The Washington Post and radical leftist/feminist attorney Gloria Allred being the voices telling the folks of Alabama to vote for a pro-abortion, pro-illegal immigration, tax-and-spender because “suddenly,” their now-GOP candidate is an alleged pervert. Time will tell, but Alabamans appear ready to tell the coastal elites to stick it where the sun don’t shine.
So, there is a new normal. While President Donald Trump talks directly to the American public and governs with a pretty conservative agenda, the professional politicians and media will continue to talk to each other in breathless indignation. The Swamp Creatures and the Deep State will ferociously fight for their existence and power believing themselves to be the normal. Yet the real new normal might be “power to the people.”
For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.
For more of today’s top cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.
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MORE ANALYSIS FROM THE PATRIOT POST
- Defense Spending Can Be Wasteful Too — While the nation debates tax cuts and deficits, here’s a look from a different angle.
- Obama’s Climate Change Dogma — His views on man-caused climate change preclude him from conversing with those who disagree.
- ACLU Joins in Celebrating Kaepernick’s Grandstanding — And he’s in good company too — the ACLU also commemorated fellow communist sympathizer Jane Fonda.
- Nevada Judge: Trump Needs Convict Votes — In truth, statistics undermine Judge Johnson’s seemingly anti-Trump crack.
BEST OF RIGHT OPINION
- Rich Lowry: No, Michael Flynn Didn’t Violate the Logan Act
- Stephen Moore: Tax Plan Is a Cut for Everyone
- Cal Thomas: Starving the Beast
- Gary Bauer: How Deep Is the ‘Deep State’?
- James Shott: Some Very Odd Courtroom Occurrences
For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.
OPINION IN BRIEF
Stephen Moore: “[Cato scholar Chris Edwards] examined the impact of the tax bill on the average tax filer in every income group with an income above $40,000. He didn’t include people who make less than that because very few in that income range have any income tax liability — and you can’t cut taxes on people who don’t pay taxes. Edwards’ remarkable analysis showed that as family income levels go up, the percentage reduction in tax burden goes down: Lower-middle-class people — who make between $40,000 and $50,000 a year — will see a 46 percent reduction in taxes paid; people who make more than $1 million will see roughly a 7 percent reduction in taxes (again, the exact rate depends on what state they live in). By the way, the Left also leaves out another impact of the tax cut that helps the middle class: a higher stock market. Some 54 million Americans have 401(k) plans. At least another 40 million have IRAs or pension plans. Where do you think that money is invested? Americans should look at their 401(k) accounts right now. They are surging in value in anticipation of the tax cut. This has contributed to a surge of economic optimism and Christmas shopping and spending. You want to kill the economy — and Christmas? Follow Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi’s advice and kill the tax cut. That’s not likely to happen. There is a high likelihood this tax cut will be enacted before Christmas. My friend Arthur Laffer says that he hopes taxes go up for everyone next year — because Americans are going to be making a lot more money as prosperity spreads to every state. Talk about a happy New Year.”
Insight: “The work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. In science consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus.” —Michael Crichton (1942-2008)
For the record: “ABC reporter Brian Ross erroneously reported that Donald Trump, while a candidate for president, instructed Michael Flynn to make contact with Russia. … This is not the first time Ross has made an egregious error in his reporting at the expense of conservatives. After the tragic shooting at a movie theater in Aurora Colorado in 2012, Ross reported that he had connected the shooter to a Tea Party website. The report was totally false, but it demonstrates how some in the media wanted to demonize the Tea Party movement.” —Gary Bauer
Upright: “Hillary Clinton lied many times to the FBI and nothing happened to her. Flynn lied and they destroyed his life. I think it’s a shame.” —Donald Trump
Non Compos Mentis: “No, it is the end of the world. This — health care, the debate on health care — is life-death. This is Armageddon. This is a very big deal.” —Nancy Pelosi on the GOP tax bill
That’s not how impartiality works: “When journalists are attacked, journalists have to resist.” —CNN’s Jim Acosta
And last… “What I have always found particularly puzzling is that liberal females never seem to question the motives of left-wing politicians who want to see Planned Parenthood fully funded by the federal government. Doesn’t it ever occur to them that the politicians are merely looking to protect themselves from those inevitable paternity suits?” —Burt Prelutsky
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Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis
Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher