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Topics - cadence4u

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1
Off-Topic / prosecutors to pursue 'substantial allegations' of voter fraud despite little ev
« on: November 10, 2020, 08:32:19 am »Message ID: 1344602
Prosecutors to pursue 'substantial allegations' of voter fraud despite little evidence!

* William Barr sent a memo to allow federal prosecutors to investigate 'substantial allegations' of voter fraud
* Within hours Richard Pilger, Justice Department official who oversees investigations of voter fraud, resigned
* Trump's son, Don Jr, was quick to criticize Pilger online and accused him of being a member of the Deep State
* The president has vowed to fight the expected electoral defeat in the courts

Donald Trump Jr has accused the Justice Department official who oversees investigations of voter fraud of being a member of the 'Deep State', after the official dramatically quit on Monday night.

Richard Pilger resigned after Attorney General William Barr authorized federal prosecutors across the U.S. to pursue 'substantial allegations' of voting irregularities before the 2020 presidential election is certified, despite little evidence of fraud.

Pilger, director of the Election Crimes Branch of the Department of Justice since 2010, stepped down within hours of Barr's announcement, in an email he sent to colleagues that was obtained by The New York Times.

And President Donald Trump's son, Don Jr, was quick to criticize Pilger.

He wrote: 'Wait. Seriously? Isn’t this the guy who was involved with the IRS and Lois Lerner in targeting conservatives and the Tea Party? Maybe that’s why he hasn’t done s**t at DOJ. #deepstate'

Trump Jr's tweet refers to a scandal known as the 'IRS targeting controversy', when the department began targeting new tax-exempt groups following a 2010 Supreme Court ruling that allowed them to funnel money into politics.

An investigation into the scandal revealed that groups with 'Tea Party' and associated terms in their names had been put on an IRS list that singled them out for extra scrutiny, leading to accusations of bias.

Lois Lerner, then head of the tax-exempt division at the IRS, had spoken with Richard Pilger over email in 2010, during his first year as head of the election crimes branch of the DoJ.

In the exchange - which came shortly before the midterm elections - they spoke about the possibility of prosecuting groups for abusing their tax-exempt status.

The pair also met around the same time - a meeting was later scrutinized in Congress. Lerner eventually pleaded the Fifth.

Pilger submitted his resignation Monday evening shortly after his boss, Barr, announced the unprecedented federal support for the election investigations - a move which would delight Donald Trump.

In his resignation email, Pilger said Barr's memo was 'an important new policy abrogating the forty-year-old Non-Interference-Policy for ballot fraud investigations in the period prior to elections becoming certified and uncontested.'

He said his resignation was 'in accord with the best tradition of the John C. Keeney Award for Exceptional Integrity and Professionalism (my most cherished Departmental recognition).'

Barr's memo angered legal experts, who pointed out that any issues around voting are handled at the state level and should not be considered a federal matter.

Several analysts said that Barr was at serious risk of dragging the Department of Justice into a highly partisan electoral war, waged through the courts.

Pilger, whose 25-year career has been devoted to election crimes and public corruption, told his colleagues in the email on Monday evening that he was quitting, in a sign of how worried many within the legal community are at Barr's unprecedented behavior.

Barr's action comes days after Joe Biden defeated President Donald Trump and raises the prospect that Trump will use the Justice Department to try to challenge the outcome.

It gives prosecutors the ability to go around longstanding Justice Department policy that normally would prohibit such overt actions before the election is formally certified.

In his memo, Barr argues that the existing 'passive and delayed enforcement approach' could undermine the vote.

He says that the precedent should be ignored, and investigations conducted rigorously before the certification of votes on December 8.

'In instances where they are consulted, the ECB's (Election Crimes Branch) general practice has been to counsel that overt investigative steps ordinarily should not be taken until the election in question has been concluded, its results certified and all recounts and election contests concluded,' he wrote.

'Such a passive and delayed enforcement approach can result in situations in which election misconduct cannot realistically be rectified.'

A Justice Department official told the New York Times that Barr had authorized scrutiny of allegations about ineligible voters in Nevada and backdated mail-in ballots Pennsylvania.

Trump has not conceded the election and is instead claiming without evidence that there has been a widespread, multi-state conspiracy by Democrats to skew the vote tally in Biden's favor.

Biden holds a sizable lead in multiple battleground states and there has been no indication of enough improperly counted or illegally cast votes that would shift the outcome.

Election officials from both political parties have publicly stated the election went well, though there have been minor issues that are typical in elections, including voting machines breaking and ballots that were miscast and lost.

Trump has not conceded the election and is instead claiming without evidence that there has been a widespread, multi-state conspiracy by Democrats to skew the vote tally in Biden's favor.

Biden holds a sizable lead in multiple battleground states and there has been no indication of enough improperly counted or illegally cast votes that would shift the outcome.

Election officials from both political parties have publicly stated the election went well, though there have been minor issues that are typical in elections, including voting machines breaking and ballots that were miscast and lost.

States have until December 8 to resolve election disputes, including recounts and court contests over the results.

Members of the Electoral College meet on December 14 to finalize the outcome.

Pilger's resignation was taken as a very worrying sign from people who had worked alongside him.

Steve Dettelback, former U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, said he had first crossed paths with Pilger 30 years ago and described him as 'a great prosecutor'.

'Shame on the political "leadership" at DOJ,' he said.

Noah Bookbinder, a former federal prosecutor who is now the Executive Director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), said: 'Richard Pilger is a respected apolitical attorney who has been a federal corruption prosecutor for decades (including when I was one years ago).

'His resigning in protest makes clear to me that something very wrong indeed is happening here.'

Another former colleague, former federal prosecutor Peter Zeidenberg, added: 'I also worked with Richard Pilger at Public Integrity. He is someone with an outstanding reputation.

'If he feels the need to step down, something bad is happening.'

Their concern was echoed by political figures.

Richard Blumenthal, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said that Barr was 'the president's puppet' and was deliberately undermining the election.

Chris Murphy, Senator for Connecticut, said it was 'sad' how many public servants were forced out.

Preet Bharara, the former US attorney for the Southern District of New York - until he was fired by Trump - said he expected the resignation of Pilger would lead to a Senate inquiry.

'Who will be the first Senator to call for an Inspector General investigation over the AG Barr memo that just prompted the head of the Election Crimes Branch at DOJ to step down?' he wondered.

Gene Rossi, a former federal prosecutor, told Law&Crime Network that the 'Justice Department is not Trump's toy - and Barr should not act like the president's binky.'

He added: 'Just when we thought that the most politically compliant Attorney General in modern times would go quietly into the night, Bill Barr rises from his bunker and shocks us again.'

National security lawyer Bradley P. Moss told Law&Crime: 'This is getting rather dangerously close to the line of unlawful political interference by the Justice Department.'

He pointed out the voting irregularities were usually resolved at the state level.

'The federal government has very little role in the conduct of our elections, and there is no indication that the various quixotic lawsuits being filed in the states can't resolve this issue just fine without intervention by DOJ,' Moss said.

'Hopefully this is simply more 'election theater' by AG Barr to assuage the president's fragile ego than anything else.'

Biden is ahead by 43,000 votes in Pennsylvania, 148,000 votes in Michigan, 34,000 votes in Nevada and 13,000 votes in Arizona, with ballots still being counted.

Even if all of Trump's current challenges are successful, experts believe they are unlikely to overcome those margins. The campaign has promised more challenges to come.

The Trump campaign has said it will order a recount in Wisconsin, where Biden is up by 20,000 votes, and is likely in Georgia, where he is currently up by 10,000, but they are unlikely to overturn those results. The Trump camp is furiously raising money it says will go to the effort.

The Trump campaign has yet to produce any evidence to back its claims of widespread fraud.

Resignation letter from the director of the Election Crimes Branch
"Attached please find the Attorney General's Memorandum of today entitled 'Post-Voting Election Irregularity Inquiries', an important new policy abrogating the forty-year-old Non-Interference-Policy for ballot fraud investigations in the period prior to elections becoming certified and uncontested. Federal Prosecution of Election Offenses, pp. 84-85 (8th Ed. 2017).

"Having familiarized myself with the new policy and its ramifications, and in accord with the best tradition of the John C. Keeney Award for Exceptional Integrity and Professionalism (my most cherished Departmental recognition), I must regretfully resign from my role as Director of the Electoral Crimes Branch.

"I have enjoyed very much working with you for over a decade to aggressively and diligently enforce federal criminal election law, policy and practice without partisan fear or favor.

"I thank you for your support in that effort.

"The Acting Director of the Election Crimes Branch going forward will be PIN Deputy Chief Robert J. Heberle. Deputy Director Sean F. Mulryne will remain in his position.

"Please give them both the same support that I have enjoyed, and rest assured that the Public Integrity Section remains committed to operating properly in all of its functions.

"Best wishes, RCP."






2
Off-Topic / Report: Wisconsin Election Clerks May Have Illegally Altered Thousands of Ballot
« on: November 08, 2020, 11:43:48 am »Message ID: 1344471
Report: Wisconsin Election Clerks May Have Illegally Altered Thousands of Ballots

Poll workers in Wisconsin may have unlawfully altered thousands of mail-in ballots due to unlawful guidance from the state’s election commission, according to a report.

According to Wisconsin law, an absentee ballot requires that it be signed by a witness who also lists his or her address. Should the ballot not contain the a witness address, the ballot is disallowed and must be returned to the voter so that the witness can provide that information.

However, according to a report from the “Dan O’Donnell Show,” sources claim that “clerks and vote counters” in the state wrote in the witness signatures themselves. Furthermore, the report claims that the election workers chose to write in the addresses because they were illegally advised to do so by the Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC).

If the poll workers did in fact write the addresses in, the ballots are invalid.

“The statute is very, very clear,” said retired Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman. “If an absentee ballot does not have a witness address on it, it’s not valid. That ballot is not valid.”

According to O’Donnell, “The WEC sent uniform instructions to voters with their mail-in ballots that informed them that ‘your witness must sign and provide their full address (street number, street name, city) in the Certification of Witness section’ and warned that ‘if any of the required information above is missing, your ballot will not be counted.'”

Though, according to O’Donnell, additional guidance was sent to clerks in October that instructed them to fill-in the witness address portion of the ballot themselves, to prevent it from being invalidated.

“Please note that the clerk should attempt to resolve any missing witness address information prior to Election Day if possible, and this can be done through reliable information (personal knowledge, voter registration information, through a phone call with the voter or witness),” the WEC wrote. “The witness does not need to appear to add a missing address.”

Judge Gableman says that directive “turned the statute on its head.”

“In defiance of and direct contradiction to the statute, the Wisconsin Elections Commission gave guidance–that is, cover–to all 72 county clerks and turned the statute on his head,” Gableman explained. “They said, ‘Gee, we know the law says an absentee ballot without the witness address is not valid, but county clerk, you have a duty to go ahead and look up on your own the witness’ address if there’s no address on the absentee ballot.”

The WEC appears to be aware of the questionable legality of their directive given that the commission told clerks to write the addresses in using red ink, which would make the ballots easier to locate during a recount.

O’Donnell writes:

The Republican Party of Wisconsin estimates that thousands of witness addresses may have been changed, thus invalidating the ballots on which they appeared. The statutory remedy for this is to subtract a commensurate number of votes for the candidates for whom those ballots were cast, meaning that vote totals may substantially change.

President Trump’s campaign is investigating the scale to which clerks and election workers were altering ballots as well as several other incidents that it has termed ‘irregularities.’ President Trump has also publicly called for a recount of Wisconsin’s vote.

As it stands, Joe Biden won the state by roughly 20,000 votes. In addition to investigating potentially invalid ballots in Wisconsin, the Trump legal team is also looking at potential irregularities and allegations of fraud in several other states.


3
Off-Topic / Report: Wisconsin Election Clerks May Have Illegally Altered Thousands of Ballot
« on: November 08, 2020, 11:43:30 am »Message ID: 1344470
Report: Wisconsin Election Clerks May Have Illegally Altered Thousands of Ballots

Poll workers in Wisconsin may have unlawfully altered thousands of mail-in ballots due to unlawful guidance from the state’s election commission, according to a report.

According to Wisconsin law, an absentee ballot requires that it be signed by a witness who also lists his or her address. Should the ballot not contain the a witness address, the ballot is disallowed and must be returned to the voter so that the witness can provide that information.

However, according to a report from the “Dan O’Donnell Show,” sources claim that “clerks and vote counters” in the state wrote in the witness signatures themselves. Furthermore, the report claims that the election workers chose to write in the addresses because they were illegally advised to do so by the Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC).

If the poll workers did in fact write the addresses in, the ballots are invalid.

“The statute is very, very clear,” said retired Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman. “If an absentee ballot does not have a witness address on it, it’s not valid. That ballot is not valid.”

According to O’Donnell, “The WEC sent uniform instructions to voters with their mail-in ballots that informed them that ‘your witness must sign and provide their full address (street number, street name, city) in the Certification of Witness section’ and warned that ‘if any of the required information above is missing, your ballot will not be counted.'”

Though, according to O’Donnell, additional guidance was sent to clerks in October that instructed them to fill-in the witness address portion of the ballot themselves, to prevent it from being invalidated.

“Please note that the clerk should attempt to resolve any missing witness address information prior to Election Day if possible, and this can be done through reliable information (personal knowledge, voter registration information, through a phone call with the voter or witness),” the WEC wrote. “The witness does not need to appear to add a missing address.”

Judge Gableman says that directive “turned the statute on its head.”

“In defiance of and direct contradiction to the statute, the Wisconsin Elections Commission gave guidance–that is, cover–to all 72 county clerks and turned the statute on his head,” Gableman explained. “They said, ‘Gee, we know the law says an absentee ballot without the witness address is not valid, but county clerk, you have a duty to go ahead and look up on your own the witness’ address if there’s no address on the absentee ballot.”

The WEC appears to be aware of the questionable legality of their directive given that the commission told clerks to write the addresses in using red ink, which would make the ballots easier to locate during a recount.

O’Donnell writes:

The Republican Party of Wisconsin estimates that thousands of witness addresses may have been changed, thus invalidating the ballots on which they appeared. The statutory remedy for this is to subtract a commensurate number of votes for the candidates for whom those ballots were cast, meaning that vote totals may substantially change.

President Trump’s campaign is investigating the scale to which clerks and election workers were altering ballots as well as several other incidents that it has termed ‘irregularities.’ President Trump has also publicly called for a recount of Wisconsin’s vote.

As it stands, Joe Biden won the state by roughly 20,000 votes. In addition to investigating potentially invalid ballots in Wisconsin, the Trump legal team is also looking at potential irregularities and allegations of fraud in several other states.


4
Off-Topic / Software that ‘Glitched’ in MI, GA, Incorrectly Gave Biden 1000s of Votes, Used
« on: November 08, 2020, 11:40:45 am »Message ID: 1344469
Software that ‘Glitched’ in MI, GA, Incorrectly Gave Biden 1000s of Votes, Used in 28 States

The election software that “glitched” in both Georgia and Michigan — which in Michigan’s case, incorrectly gave Joe Biden thousands of votes — is being used in 28 states, according to the software company’s website.

The software company, Dominion Voting Systems, “glitched” in Michigan, causing thousands of ballots that were meant for Republican candidates to be wrongly counted for Democrats in the state’s Antrim County. Antrim is also one of 47 counties in Michigan that uses the same software that experienced this “glitch.”

The presidential election results for Antrim County were later corrected, flipping the county from Joe Biden to President Donald Trump after the “glitch” was fixed.

Two Georgia counties — which use the same electronic voting software — also reported encountering glitches during the 2020 election, which caused their voting machines to crash.

A Georgia election official said that a technical glitch that halted voting in the state’s Spalding and Morgan counties was caused by a vendor uploading an update to their election machines the night before the election.

“That is something that they don’t ever do. I’ve never seen them update anything the day before the election,” said Marcia Ridley, elections supervisor at Spalding County Board of Election.

A third county in Georgia — Gwinnett County — which uses the same software, also experienced a glitch. This glitch, however, had caused the delay of counting thousands of votes in the 2020 presidential election.

Election officials estimate that roughly 80,000 absentee ballots were impacted by this glitch, yet decided to push the impacted votes through, knowing some of the votes would likely change.

The software was implemented in all of Georgia’s counties for the first time this year.

Last year, the Dominion Democracy Suite 5.5A was certified by the Pennsylvania Department of State.

Dominion Voting Systems boasts on its website of having “customers in 28 states,” including “9 of the top 20 counties” and “4 of the top 10 counties” throughout the United States.

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020/11/07/software-that-glitched-in-mi-ga-incorrectly-gave-biden-1000s-of-votes-used-in-28-states/

5
Off-Topic / Nevada Whistleblower Says He Witnessed Processing of Illegitimate Votes
« on: November 08, 2020, 11:37:12 am »Message ID: 1344467
Nevada Whistleblower Says He Witnessed Processing of Illegitimate Votes

Fox News reported on Saturday that a whistleblower in Nevada swore an affidavit declaring that he witnessed illegitimate processing of ballots as an election worker.

Specifically, the whistleblower claimed to have been instructed to count ballots needing signature verification that lacked the requisite signatures to be eligible.

Fox News’s John Roberts said:

In just the last hour in Nevada, an election worker whose job was to process mail-in ballots says he witnessed irregularities in counting those ballots and was told by a supervisor — who he names — to put through ballots he believed needed signature verification without that verification first being done.

He  says he was also told to ignore discrepancies with addresses. That worker has sworn out an affidavit which has been sent to the Department of Justice here in Washington. A Trump campaign attorney says of that, quote, “The affidavit makes clear that we’re not dealing with oversights or sloppiness. This was intentional criminal conduct.”

The Nevada Republican Party said it received thousands of complaints regarding the general election in Nevada. It also said thousands of ballots were processed “without meaningful observation” by Republican observers.

The Nevada GOP claimed via statement on Wednesday:

There have been a number of mail ballots turned in to Clark County Department of Elections that are being processed without meaningful observation. Ballots are continuing to be processed in this same manner.

“The fact remains that hundreds of thousands of ballots have been counted in Clark County and as a Judge and the Secretary of State have confirmed we have not been allowed to observe or challenge a single signature match for these votes. With the issues that have been reported regarding the election, we are now more than ever concerned with the lack of the transparency in observing and challenging possible invalid ballots,” says Donald J Trump Campaign Co-Chair Adam Laxalt.

On Thursday, the Nevada GOP announced its submission of a criminal referral to Attorney General William Barr alleging 3,602 instances of voter fraud in the Silver State.




6
Off-Topic / 'The Joe meeting happened, the emails are correct and Joe took 10% of equity': B
« on: October 18, 2020, 11:45:12 am »Message ID: 1342494
'The Joe meeting happened, the emails are correct and Joe took 10% of equity': Bannon says EVERYTHING reported in Hunter laptop scandal is true and reveals how lawyer for Biden's son tried to get hard drive back - proving 'it's no Russian intel op'

* Steve Bannon said Sunday everything found on Hunter Biden's lap top is true
* 'Joe Biden has lied about this for years,' the former White House strategist said
* He also revealed that Hunter Biden's lawyer tried desperately to get the hard drive back after it was left at a lap top
   repair shop with his water damaged Mac
* Bannon also revealed Sunday that if Trump fails to win a second White House term he will run again in 2024
* 'You're not going to see the end of Donald Trump,' he said
* Bannon was recently arrested for federal money-laundering

Steve Bannon said Sunday everything that has come to light from Hunter Biden's hard drive is true as he paints Joe Biden as a 'stone cold liar' after revelations show deep financial ties between the Biden's and Chinese Communist Party.

'Joe Biden has lied about this for years,' Bannon told Sky News in an interview Sunday.

'What Fox did, which was very interesting on that issue but also on the Chinese – they actually went to the people on the emails and contacted them. What was so stunning is that they reported last night that one, the guys on the emails said absolutely the meetings happened. This is not off of some Russia intelligence operation. That emails correct, the meanings correct and, by the way, that 10 per cent of the equity is Joe Biden's,' Bannon said.

The former White House strategist for President Donald Trump said Hunter's lawyer tried to email the repair shop to get the laptop back and has since then contacted Bannon and his team to retrieve the sensitive hard drive.

'Hunter Biden's lawyer has come to us both with phone calls and with emails saying, 'hey, I've got to get the hard drive back',' Bannon said.

'This is not some Russian intelligence operation; they admit it's their hard drive,' he continued in proving the validity of the information found on the laptop. 'We have the emails from the Lawyer, if we need to release them, we'll release them.'

Republican Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, is calling on FBI Director Christopher Wray to confirm or deny details regarding the hard drive.

In a letter to Wray, which was obtained by Fox News Sunday, Johnson says that a whistleblower contacted the committee on September 24.

He said they claimed to possess a laptop that Hunter left at his business, and that he had turned it over to the FBI.

Johnson noted in his letter that his staff immediately asked the FBI to confirm certain details to better validate the claim, but the bureau said they would not comment on any of the information.

Trump weighed in on Hunter's emails on Twitter Sunday, and gave his Democratic rival a new nickname: '10% Joe.'

'Hunter Biden's laptop is a disaster for the entire Biden family, but especially for his father, Joe. It is now a proven fact, and cannot be denied, that all of that info is the REAL DEAL,' Trump tweeted. 'That makes it impossible for '50%, or 10%' Joe, to ever assume the office of the President!'

'Joe Biden is a corrupt politician, and everybody knows it,' the president continued in another tweet. 'Now you have the proof, perhaps like never was had before on a major politician. Laptop plus. This is the second biggest political scandal in our history!' 

He also praised the media outlet, The New York Post, for first revealing the contents of the hard drive in a report last week.

'Very proud of the @nypost, my former 'hometown newspaper'. They have said and shown what everyone knows about Sleepy Joe Biden. He is a CORRUPT POLITICIAN!!!' Trump, a usual critic of the press, tweeted.

Bannon continued in his interview with Sky News that 'the stunning thing about these emails… is that Biden has basically said to the American people, 'I knew nothing about it.' Now we actually see they had meetings set up.'

'That sets the predicate that Joe Biden has lied consistently over the last couple years to the American people. He lied on the debate stage with President Trump,' he said.

Emails on the laptop revealed that Hunter planned to introduce his father – who was the then-Vice President – to an executive at the Ukrainian energy company Burisma, where Hunter served on the board of directors.

Publicly, the former vice president has said he's never spoken to his son about his overseas business dealings.

But the emails seem to indicate otherwise.

Bannon also said Sunday in an interview with The Australian that Trump will run for re-election in 2024 if he loses the presidential race to Joe Biden next month.

'You're not going to see the end of Donald Trump,' Bannon said when asked what will happen if he fails to win a second White House term in November.

Bannon, who was recently arrested for federal money-laundering and fraud, added that he believes the November 3 election was 'closer than is being reported', and said 'Trump will win on election day'.

'I'll make this prediction right now: if for any reason the election is stolen from or in some sort of way Joe Biden is declared the winner, Trump will announce he's going to run for re-election in 2024,' he told the outlet.

Bannon also predicted the election result will go to the Supreme Court and may even be conferred to the House of Representative in January, saying the outcome will be contentious and 'won't be settled anytime soon'.

Bannon's latest comments cast a slightly more pessimistic tone to remarks made just days ago during a speech in front of the Young Republican Federation, in which he resolutely stated that not only will Trump win on November 3, but he'll secure victory very early.

'At 10 o'clock or 11 o'clock… on November 3, Donald J. Trump is going to walk into the Oval Office, and he may hit a tweet before he goes in there… and he's going to sit there, having won Ohio, and being up in Pennsylvania and Florida, and he's going to say, 'Hey, game's over,'' Bannon, Trump's 2016 campaign CEO, told the crowd.

'The elites are traumatized. They do not want to go stand in line and vote. That, ladies and gentlemen, is a game-changer,' Bannon continued. 'It [the decisive factor] is what electorate shows up to vote on a vote that can be certified. That's a vote that counts. And right now, what they [Trump critics] don't want to talk about, is Donald J. Trump leads on people who are actually going to show up and vote on November 3, by 21 percent.'

Speaking to the Australian, Bannon also claimed that the lawyers acting for Joe Biden's son Hunter have made numerous attempts to retrieve his computer hard-drive that's now at the center of an FBI probe.

Such extensive efforts reportedly include sending legal letters to the owner of a Delaware repair shop where the Democratic presidential candidate's son had reportedly dropped off his laptop to be serviced in 2019.

Last week, the New York Post published emails and photographs that the outlet claimed were contained on a laptop owned by Hunter Biden, which he apparently never collected from the repair store.

The hard drive was retrieved by a third-party from the shop owner in January and then sent to Giuliani. Giuliani seemingly then sat on the information for months, before releasing it to the Post just weeks before the election.

The messages suggested that Hunter Biden had arranged for a top executive at a Ukrainian energy firm, of which Hunter was on the board of directors, to meet his father in person, when he was vice-president and in charge of US policy with Ukraine.

In the emails published by the Post, Biden is shown pursuing a lucrative deal involving China's largest private energy company, saying in one message that the proposed deal would be 'interesting for me and my family', before discussing remuneration packages.

Bannon, who alerted the Post to the laptop's existence, claimed that Biden's lawyers contacted Rudy Giuliani, Trump's attorney, hours before the emails were published in a last-ditch effort to retrieve Hunter's alleged hard-drive.

'His lawyer, [George] Mesires from Chicago, one of the top lawyers in the country, emailed us. He called the repair shop, he sent us an email, he sent the repair shop an email saying Hunter dropped these off, he forgot to pick them up. That's an email,' Bannon told the Australian.

'In addition, we haven't ­released this, Hunter Biden's lawyer has come to us both with phone calls and with emails saying I've got to get the hard-drive back. This is not some Russian ­intelligence operation, they've ­admitted it's their hard-drive.

'It was the night before we came out with the first story, I think, because the NY Post went to them for comment… they panicked. One lawyer started calling around and sent the emails.'

Bannon reiterated his claim that Biden's lawyer had also sent legal notices to the owner of the repair shop seeking return of the hard-drive.

'We're breaking news here. He actually in a panic called… ­because Hunter when he dropped it off, there was two or three of these shops in Wilmington. They called around and he figured out it might be this guy. He called him and when the guy said I can't ­remember, I'm going back to my shop, he sent a couple of emails in a panic saying 'I've got to get my hands on this right away.''

Bannon, who said he was contacted by Giuliani in late August to help with media strategy for the emails, said he has been holding on to the legal letters and waiting to use them if the Biden camp tried to deny the laptop ­belonged to Hunter.

'We haven't released that yet. We're holding that back to make sure if they walk into the trap, we're just going to drop it on them,' he said.

'My training under Andrew Breitbart was put it out, let them lie and then bang, drop them on the lie, let them lie some more, drop it again. We have the emails from the lawyer, if we need to ­release them, we'll release them.'

The FBI is reportedly conducting an investigation into whether the allegations are part of a Russian disinformation campaign against the Biden campaign, though the agency has refused to speak publicly on the matter.

FBI Director Christopher Wray has warned that Russia is trying to 'denigrate' Biden ahead of the election and damage his chances of unseating Trump.

Bannon was arrested and charged in August with defrauding donors to a private fund-raising effort called We Build the Wall, which was intended to bolster the president's signature initiative along the Mexican border.

The fund-raising effort collected more than $25 million, and prosecutors say Bannon used nearly $1 million of it for personal expenses.

Bannon pleaded not guilty to the charges on August 20.

Emails
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8852685/The-meeting-happened-Joe-took-10-equity-Bannon-says-Hunters-laptop-TRUE.html

7
Off-Topic / Second batch of smoking gun emails reveal Hunter Biden's dealings with 'disappea
« on: October 15, 2020, 10:29:03 am »Message ID: 1342327
Second batch of smoking gun emails reveal Hunter Biden's dealings with 'disappeared' Chinese energy company chairman about his $30 MILLION consultancy fee 'for introductions alone'

* Hunter Biden was involved with China's largest private energy company CEFC
* He was given equity, ownership of a holding company and huge consulting fees
* Hunter was dealing with CEFC chairman Ye Jianming who has since vanished
* In one email, Hunter said a lucrative deal would be 'interesting for my family'
* A report about the emails did not include response from Biden or others involved

Hunter Biden pursued deals with a major Chinese energy company including one that would be 'interesting for me and my family', new secret emails said to be from the presidential candidate's son claim.

He also struck a deal for $30 million plus bonuses 'based on introductions alone' over three years after his father left office, then was offered a 'much more lasting and lucrative arrangement.'

The son of the Democratic presidential nominee communicated with China's largest private energy company, CEFC, according to the latest trove of messages unearthed by the New York Post from what is said to be Hunter's personal laptop.

The trove of emails have set of a series of political shockwaves including:

* The laptop was revealed to include a picture of Hunter with what appears to be a crack pipe, and an 11-minute sex
   and drug video which is still to be seen;
* Twitter barred the Trump campaign from its account for trying to share the originally story about Hunter's Ukraine
   emails amid a mounting row over 'censorship' by it and Facebook;
* Donald Trump seized on the release - orchestrated by his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani - to call his rival 'a corrupt
   politician';
* Senate Republicans said they will investigate the first tranche of emails, from Hunter's Ukrainian business partners,
   which appear to show the Burisma energy aide being introduced to Joe Biden when he was vice president;
* Democrats accusing Giuliani of peddling 'misinformation' and 'parading around with a Russian agent.'

The latest emails, published again early in the morning, focus on Hunter's dealings with Ye Jianming, the former chairman of CEFC in 2017, after his father had left office and when it was thought he would not run in 2020.

Ye has not been seen since he was taken into custody by Chinese authorities in 2018 amid rumored links to the Chinese military and intelligence services.

It was previously known that he gave Hunter a diamond 

CEFC went bankrupt earlier this year after it was unable to repay its huge debts after warnings over its lack of transparency and dealings with sanctioned Russian firms.

In one email sent to Hunter in May 2017 titled 'Expectations', details of 'remuneration packages' for six people in a business venture were discussed.

He was identified as the 'chair/vice chair depending on agreement with CEFC', an apparent reference to the now bankrupt Shanghai conglomerate China Energy Co.

Hunter's pay was '850' and the correspondence also noted how he 'has some office expectations he will elaborate'.
Another email outlines a 'provisional agreement' where 80 per cent of the 'equity' would be shared equally among four people whose initials appear to relate to Hunter and three other recipients.

The sender of the email, James Gilliar, from consulting firm J2cR, said: 'I am happy to raise any detail with Zang if there is shortfalls?'

The email divides the equity into '20 H' - meaning 20 per cent equity to Hunter; 20 per cent to RW, meaning Rob Walker, also of the jc2r consultancy; 20 per cent to another man called Tony Bubulinski.

The remaining 20 per cent was split with 10 per cent going to 'Jim' who is otherwise unnamed, and then '10 held by H for the big guy?'

The big guy is unnamed.

Zang appears to be a reference to Zang Jian Jun who was the former executive director of CEFC.

In another 2017 email, Hunted reportedly discussed a deal with Ye. According to the leaked emails, Biden wrote that Ye had been influential in improving a three-year consulting contract with CEFC that would pay him $10million annually just for introductions.

He was given half ownership of a holding company to sweeten the deal, with Ye owning the other half.

According to the leaked emails, Biden wrote: 'Consulting fees is one piece of our income stream but the reason this proposal by the chairman was so much more interesting to me and my family is that we would also be partners inn the equity and profits of the JV's [joint venture's] investments.'

His email was sent to Gongwen Dong who has been linked to the purchase of two luxury Manhattan apartments for a total of $83million, which were bought by companies linked to Ye, according to the Wall Street Journal.

A photo from August 2017 appears to show a flowchart of the ownership of Hudson West which is split equally between Hunter Biden and 'Chairman'.

A report on Biden's business dealings released last month found Hudson West III opened a line of credit in September 2017.

Credit cards issued against the account were used by Hunter, his uncle James and James's wife Sara.

They purchased more than $100,000 worth of items including airline tickets, Apple products, hotel and restaurant bookings, according to the report released by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa).

Hudson West has since been dissolved and Hunter's law firm Owaco PC was one of its two owners the report said. 

Also seen in the emails was an agreement from one of Ye's associates to pay Biden a retainer of $1million for counsel on US law.

The offer was made by former Hong Kong government official Chi Ping Patrick Ho, who has been convicted in Manhattan for two schemes to pay $3million in bribes to African government officials for oil rights.

He served a prison sentence of three years and was deported to Hong Kong in June.

The revelations come after emails come from Hunter's laptop appeared to show him making an introduction between his powerful father and a Ukrainian energy firm on Wednesday.

Gas company Burisma' adviser Vadym Pozharskyi thanked Hunter for 'an opportunity to meet your father' in an email sent in 2015, according to the stash of data given to the New York Post by Rudy Giuliani. 

Biden dismissed the findings, and his spokesman Andrew Bates said the paper ' never asked the Biden campaign about the critical elements of this story...moreover, we have reviewed Joe Biden’s official schedules from the time and no meeting, as alleged by the New York Post, ever took place.'   

The emails are among a trove being referenced by Giuliani and his team after the owner of a computer repair shop in Delaware recovered data from a MacBook pro laptop that was dropped off and never retrieved.

The computer was seized by the FBI and its contents shared with the Post by Giuliani.

Giuliani's lawyer Bob Costello said there are some 40,000 emails on the hard drive including thousands of texts. It also includes images of Hunter 'in very compromising positions,' Costello told Fox News.

There has been no comment on the new emails from Biden's campaign, his lawyer, nor the Chinese businessman.

But Biden's lawyer has previously dismissed the stories, accusing Giuliani of dishonesty.

Who's Who In The Hunter Chinese Emails

Hunter Biden

Vice president's son was well-known to be seeking business deals in China. He traveled there in 2013 on Air Force Two and introduced his father to a business partner, Jonathan Li. In 2017, after his father left office, he pursued a relationship with Ye Jianming

Ye Jianming

Chairman and founder of CEFC China Energy, 43. A wunderkind of the Chinese energy world. Gave Hunter a diamond in 2017 as they pursued a business relationship. But in November 2017 company was accused of bribery in Africa by the DOJ, and in March 2018 he was arrested in China, reportedly on the orders of Xi Jinping. Has not been seen or heard from since but a prosecution in 2018 saw a senior Communist leader accused of taking bribes from him

Zang Jian Jun

Senior executive at CEFC and also a senior figure in the China Chamber of International Commerce

Tony Bobulinski

Penn State wrestler and Navy veteran turned-California businessman, 48, who appears to have done other business in China. Unclear how he and Gilliar know each other. Other business ventures include an investment in a Chinese men's clothing company called VLOV

James Gilliar

British-born 56-year-old businessman based in the Czech Republic. Set up jc2r, the company which is in the emails, in 2015. It is no longer active. Gilliar appears to breed race horses with his wife, Erika and appears to also be an adviser to a holding company run by the leader of Abu Dhabi's son

The Big Guy and Jim

Unidentified - and certain to set off a string of conspiracy theories.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8842965/Hunter-Biden-pursued-deals-interesting-family-major-Chinese-firm.html

8
Off-Topic / Vote In Person
« on: October 01, 2020, 11:47:05 am »Message ID: 1340866
Please vote in person!

Democrats are already pulling voters SCAM! Someone on the DEMOCRATS team already stole Mail in vote through the mail by opening them & tossing vote for TRUMP! Democrats push voters to vote by mail!

Please if you mail your ballots in your voting ballots might get throwing into the trash!

Please drop your mail in votes ballot at your local voting polls drop off!

9
Off-Topic / Cops investigate homeowner who jokingly urged voters to put mail-in ballots in a
« on: September 20, 2020, 11:23:22 am »Message ID: 1339682
Cops investigate homeowner who jokingly urged voters to put mail-in ballots in a TOILET after Democratic clerk complained people might think it was a real polling station

* A Mason, Michigan, resident put a toilet on their lawn with a sign that says, 'Place mail in ballots here'
* But Barb Byrum, the Democratic clerk of Ingham County, filed a complaint with police over the display, saying it could
   mislead voters
* 'Elections in this country are to be taken seriously' she said
*  The lawn also has a sign that calls for the recall of Governor Gretchen Whitmer
*  President Donald Trump has repeatedly warned that voting by mail could lead to fraud and spoil the election

A Michigan resident's apparent joke showing disdain for voting by mail is no laughing matter for one election official.

The resident put a toilet on their lawn in the city of Mason with a sign that says, 'Place mail in ballots here.'

Barb Byrum, the Democratic clerk of Ingham County, filed a complaint with police over the display, saying it could mislead people who aren't familiar with the voting system.

'It is a felony to take illegal possession of an absentee ballot,' Byrum said Friday.

'Elections in this country are to be taken seriously and there are many people who are voting by mail for the first time this election,' she said.

Police told the AP that the complaint is being investigated.

President Donald Trump has repeatedly warned that voting by mail could lead to fraud and spoil the election, making distorted claims that elections officials fear could cause anxiety and confusion among voters.

It's the 'safest way to vote during the pandemic,' Byrum said.

She didn't identify the person who lives at the address. The lawn also has a sign that calls for the recall of Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

No one answered the door Friday night, the Lansing State Journal reported.

More than 2 million Michigan voters could cast absentee ballots after changes in election law. Separately, a judge on Friday said absentee ballots postmarked by Nov. 2 can be counted if received within 14 days after the Nov. 3 election.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8750921/Official-Toilet-display-mocking-mail-voting-crime.html

10
Off-Topic / Pelosi on Using Impeachment to Stop SCOTUS Nomination: ‘We Have Arrows in Our Qu
« on: September 20, 2020, 11:18:20 am »Message ID: 1339680
Pelosi on Using Impeachment to Stop SCOTUS Nomination: ‘We Have Arrows in Our Quiver’

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said on Sunday’s broadcast of ABC’s “This Week,” that Democratic lawmakers have “arrows in our quiver,” when asked if impeachment was a possibility to stop a lame-duck Supreme Court nomination should President Donald Trump lose the White House in November and the vacancy following the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has not been filled.

Anchor George Stephanopoulos said, “Let me press you though on what happens. You want people to get out and vote. And even that’s no guarantee that the White House and Senate Republicans won’t try to push through a Supreme Court nomination in a lame-duck session even if Joe Biden wins on November 3rd, even if Democrats win, pick up seats in the House, and maybe even the Senate. So what can you do then? Some have mentioned the possibility if they try to push through a nominee in a lame-duck session that you and the House can move to impeach President Trump or Attorney General Barr as a way of stalling and preventing the Senate from acting on this nomination.”

Pelosi said, “Well, we have our options. We have arrows in our quiver that I’m not about to discuss right now, but the fact is we have a big challenge in our country. This president has threatened to not even accept the results of the election with statements that he and his henchmen have made. So right now, our main goal and I think Ruth Bader Ginsburg would want that to be to protect the integrity of the election, that we protect the American people from the coronavirus.”

Stephanopoulos pressed, “To be clear, you’re not taking any arrows out of your quiver and not ruling anything out.”

Pelosi said, “Yeah, we have a responsibility. We’ve taken an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. We have a responsibility to meet the needs of the American people. That is when we weigh the equities of protecting our democracy requires us to use every arrow in our quiver.”
https://www.breitbart.com/clips/2020/09/20/pelosi-on-using-impeachment-to-stop-scotus-nomination-we-have-arrows-in-our-quiver/


11
Off-Topic / Trump is expected to ignore RBG's dying wish and nominate her replacement in day
« on: September 19, 2020, 10:35:34 am »Message ID: 1339554
Trump is expected to ignore RBG's dying wish and nominate her replacement in days while Biden demands he wait until after the election so the American people can decide

* It was the dying wish of late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who passed away Friday, that the next
   president nominate her replacement
* Trump is set to ignore her and announce a nomination in the coming days
* His rival Biden has already hit out and demanded he wait until after the election
* Even if Trump does nominate in the next few days, a group of rebel GOP senators may stop it being approved
* Senators Mitt Romney and Lisa Murkowski are among those expected to oppose a vote

President Donald Trump is expected to ignore the dying wish of late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and nominate her replacement in the coming days in a rush to hurry through a conservative judge before the election.

Ginsburg had hoped that the selection of the next Justice was held after November's election, stating her 'most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed'

But Republican Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell has already pledged a vote on a Trump nominee.

Trump's attempts to hurry through his own pick, the third Supreme Court Justice he would have nominated, has already been met with backlash from his rival, Democratic nominee Joe Biden.

Biden demanded that Trump waits until after the election so the winner can put forward the nomination.

It comes as insiders suggest that some Republican Senators led by Utah's Mitt Romney will lead a rebellion to scupper Trump's chances of a rushed process.

Trump is expected to whittle down his nomination list from the 20 names he announced last week to one nominee that will then go through the Senate vetting process. 

Among the current front runners is U.S. Circuit Judge Amy Coney Barrett, 48, a devout Catholic who holds a strong pro-life stance.

Liberals fear her appointment would result in the removal of the Roe v Wade judgement that legalizes abortion nationwide.

Once a nominee is named and vetted by the Senate, lengthy confirmation hearings in the Senate Judiciary normally follow, culminating with a recommendation on whether the nominee should be confirmed and placed onto the court.

The decision on the nomination lies solely with the Senate although the Vice President breaks a tie in the event of a 50/50 split.

Generally the process from nomination to appointment takes about 70 days although some, such as Brett Kavanaugh, take longer and Ginsburg's appointment only took 50 days.

Even this, however, was longer than the 46 days currently remaining before the election meaning the vetting and review for a Trump nominee would have to take place at breakneck speed.

The long-term direction of the nation's highest court is at stake as the closely divided court had five justices with conservative bents and four liberals, before Ginsburg's death.

If Trump were to choose a conservative judge to replace the liberal Ginsburg, as expected, the court's conservatives would have more heft with a 6-3 majority. 

The president repeatedly touts his success in already nominating two conservative Supreme Court Justices as one of the biggest achievements of his term but wishes to extend his influence further.

If he loses in November without having secured a third Justice, Trump could still attempt to push a nomination through the Republican-controlled Senate before Biden's inauguration in January, although this would likely be met with fury by Democrats.

If there was still a vacancy by January, a victorious Biden could appoint a liberal nominee, leaving the conservative-liberal balance at 5-4.

With other current Justices on the court in their 70s and 80s, without the Trump nominee, a Biden presidency could have further vacancies that could swing the balance of the court completely.   

The Senate is currently controlled by 53 Republicans, while Democrats hold 45 seats. Two independents align with Democrats on most votes.

Among the 53 Republicans are some moderates, including Senators Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski, who may side with Democrats or oppose a vote before the election.

Earlier on Friday shortly before Ginsburg's death was announced, Senator Murkowski said that if she was presented with a vacancy on the court, she would not vote to confirm a nominee before the election.

'I would not vote to confirm a Supreme Court nominee. We are 50 some days away from an election,' she said, according to Alaska Public.

She said she made the decision based on the same reasoning given by Republican senators to halt the confirmation of former President Barack Obama's final nominee to the Supreme Court ahead of the 2016 election. 

This comment could place Murkowski among a group of rebel GOP senators, potentially led by Mitt Romney, that will abstain from voting or vote with Democrats if a nominee is presented.

Romney has previously shown his ability to resist Trump and will likely be targeted by Democrats who will remind him of the 18-month delay caused by Republicans in 2016 when they refused to appoint Obama's nomination ahead of that election.

Another Utah senator could also play a prominent role over the next few days although for a different reason.

Sen. Mike Lee is among Trump's shortlist for the Supreme Court role, as is his brother, Thomas Lee, who is on the Utah Supreme Court.

Maine's Collins is another GOP senator who may oppose a Trump nominee due to pressure from voters in her own state.

She is in a tough race for re-election this year in her home state, which has been trending Democratic.

Ginsburg's death could have an impact on Collins' re-election effort and her posture on whether filling the high-court seat should await the outcome of the 2020 presidential race.

Late on Friday, Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell issued a letter to GOP senators asking them not to reveal whether they will choose to vote before the election.

'For those inclined to oppose giving a nominee a vote, I urge you all to keep your powder dry. This is not the time to prematurely lock yourselves into a position you may regret later,' he wrote in a letter, seen by the Washington Post.

McConnell has said that he still hopes to complete the nomination process before November.

It can take several weeks to months between the president's nomination of a Supreme Court justice and a Senate confirmation vote as the nominee must go through a thorough vetting by the Senate and often make visits with individual senators to build support for the nomination. 

Yet there are no set rules for how long the process should take once President Donald Trump announces his pick, and some nominations have moved more quickly. It will come down to politics and votes.

The last Supreme Court opening was filled in October 2018 by Justice Kavanaugh.

His confirmation faced strong opposition from Senate Democrats and included bitter hearings amid allegations, which he denied, of sexual misconduct decades earlier.

Having being nominated by Trump on July 6, the Senate voted in favor of Kavanaugh joining the court on October 6.

Trump has already remade the federal bench for a generation and the new vacancy in the highest court gives the president the ability to shape its future for decades to come if he is re-elected in November.

The likely bitter fight ahead was reflected in early statements by Republican and Democratic senators taking partisan sides on whether a Ginsburg replacement should await the election results.

Even though Republicans caused a 14-month Supreme Court vacancy by their refusal to consider an Obama replacement for Scalia in 2016, Republican Senator Rick Scott said on Friday: 'It would be irresponsible to allow an extended vacancy on the Supreme Court' this time, as he voiced support of Trump filling Ginsburg's seat.

Democrats reminded Republicans of that 2016 delay. And Democratic Senator Chris Coons said, 'Given all the challenges facing our country, this is a moment when we should come together rather than having a rushed confirmation process further divide us.

Since becoming Senate majority leader in 2015, McConnell has focused much of his attention and wielded his power to fill the federal courts with conservative judges nominated by Trump. More than 200 have been installed.

One senior Senate Republican aide said of McConnell, 'No way he lets a (Supreme Court) seat slip away.' The aide added that a major question will be whether McConnell, in tandem with Trump, attempts to fill the vacancy before the Nov. 3 election or sometime before Jan. 20, when the next president will be sworn-in.

Trump's two nominees to the court, Justice Neil Gorsuch, 53, and Justice Brett Kavanaugh, 55, are young appointments meaning that their potential tenure could last for decades.

If possible, the president is expected to pick a third young nominee, increasing the length of his influence on the court.

The current front runner is U.S. Circuit Judge Amy Coney Barrett, 48, a devout Catholic and pro-lifer, who will cause major concerns for liberals that her anti-abortion stance will lead to the removal of the Roe v Wade ruling that legalized abortion across the nation.

Other members of the current court are also in their 70s and 80s, potentially meaning the next president could have the chance to fill yet another vacancy.

Regardless of party, presidents tend to look for the same characteristics in potential Supreme Court picks.

Stellar legal credentials are a must. And they tend to be old enough to have a distinguished legal career but young enough to serve for decades. That generally means nominees are in their late 40s or 50s.

More recently, nominees have also previously clerked for a Supreme Court justice, an early mark of legal smarts. Five of the current justices previously clerked at the Supreme Court.

Who's Who On Trump's Supreme Court Shortlist!

Republican Senators

Ted Cruz, Texas. 49

Josh Hawley, Missouri. 40

Tom Cotton, Arkansas. 43

JUDGES

Bridget Bade, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. 54

Stuart Kyle Duncan, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. 48

James Ho, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, 47

Gregory Katsas, U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. 56

Barbara Lagoa, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. 52

Carlos Muńiz, Supreme Court of Florida. 51

Martha Pacold, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. 41

Peter Phipps, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. 47

Sarah Pitlyk, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. 43

Allison Jones Rushing, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. 38

Lawrence VanDyke, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. 47

Current And Former Republican Officials

Daniel Cameron, Kentucky Attorney General. 34

Paul Clement, partner with Kirkland & Ellis, former solicitor general. 54

Steven Engel, assistant attorney general for the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel. 46

Noel Francisco, former U.S. solicitor general. 51

Christopher Landau, U.S. ambassador to Mexico. 56

Kate Todd, deputy White House counsel. 45

12
Off-Topic / Southern California is rocked by a 4.5-magnitude earthquake - with tremors felt
« on: September 19, 2020, 10:10:52 am »Message ID: 1339551
Southern California is rocked by a 4.5-magnitude earthquake - with tremors felt from Los Angeles to San Diego

* Quake occurred 10 miles west of Los Angeles late Friday night
* The impact was felt as far south as San Diego, but there have been no reports of injuries or damage to property
* Seismologists fear California could be rocked by a giant 7.4-magnitude earthquake in the near future

A 4.5-magnitude earthquake rocked Southern California, with tremors felt from Los Angeles down to San Diego.

The quake hit 10 miles west of L.A. at 11.39 pm local time on Friday, according to the US Geological Survey.

It occurred at andepth of nearly 11 miles, and lasted for 30 seconds. It was reported to be one of the biggest earthquakes to hit the L.A. area in years.

There have been no reports of injuries or damage to property, but authorities warned locals to prepare for aftershocks. 

The Los Angeles Fire Department posted a tweet shortly after the quake, which read: 'If Inside When Shaking Starts: DROP, COVER, HOLD ON! Protect Your Head & Neck While Taking Cover Under Sturdy Furniture or Near a Sturdy Interior Wall, Away From Windows and Doorways Until Shaking Stops. 

One seismologist stated that Friday's quake occurred in almost the exact same location as the Whittier Narrows earthquake in October of 1987.

That 5.9-magnitude earthquake left eight people dead and a further 200 injured. The damage bill totaled more than $213 million.

Meanwhile, on Friday night, several people posted videos that showed their homes shaking as the quake occurred.

One TikTok user was partway through a performance, when her house began to rattle as the tremors hit.

Another wrote on Twitter: 'Felt the biggest earthquake in Los Angeles   yet. It was so big I ran out of my apartment with my purse and no shoes.'

Residents live in fear of a giant earthquake jolting through the center of the city.

Seismologists say a dormant fault line runs directly beneath Los Angeles that is well overdue for rupture.

The experts fear the result could be a catastrophic 7.4-magnitude earthquake that would cause massive loss of life and billions of dollars in damage. 

It's been more than a generation since a giant earthquake shook the city.

The 6.7-magnitude Northridge earthquake rocked the L.A's suburbs on January 17, 1994, causing more than $20 billion in damage and killing 60 people.

'Hidden' fault line directly under Los Angeles threatens a devastating magnitude 7.4 earthquake

A fault line, long believed to be dormant underneath Los Angeles, could link with others and cause a major magnitude 7.4 quake, according to a report published in September 2019.

The 'Wilmington Fault,' was so deep below the Earth's surface that it was difficult to study, but researchers from Harvard, the USC  and the US Geological Survey last year imputed a 'cluster of clues' into a three-dimensional model that revealed activity not previously detected.

Research indicates that the Wilmington Fault is usually supposed to rupture every 3,200 to 4,700 years - however it has been dormant now for millions of years.

There are fears for the communities of Los Angeles and Long Beach, which are built on the Wilmington Fault.

'I hope bringing attention to it can potentially increase safety in the region,' study author Franklin Wolfe, a doctoral candidate who is part of Harvard's structural geology and Earth resources group, said at the time of publication.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8750481/Southern-California-rocked-4-5-magnitude-earthquake.html

Earthquakes:
https://scedc.caltech.edu/recent/Maps/118-34.html


13
Off-Topic / Unemployment gap between black and white workers widens to nearly DOUBLE as econ
« on: September 16, 2020, 11:21:43 am »Message ID: 1339352
Unemployment gap between black and white workers widens to nearly DOUBLE as economic recovery lags for African Americans

* In August, black unemployment was 13% while white unemployment was 7.3%
* That put the black jobless rate at 1.8 times the white rate, up from 1.6 in July
* Meanwhile, the unemployment gap between men and women narrowed
* Female unemployment rate declined to 8.6% from 10.6% in July

The unemployment gap between black and white workers widened in August, with the jobless rate for black workers nearly double that of whites, according to federal data. 

The black unemployment rate in August was 13 percent, down from 14.6 percent in July, but about 1.8 times higher than white Americans, who had a jobless rate of 7.3 percent last month, down from 9.2 percent in July.

That ratio of black unemployment to white unemployment widened from 1.6 in July and 1.5 in June, representing the slower jobs recovery for black Americans in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Historically, the black unemployment rate has always been higher than that of white workers.

There are several theories as to why the gap persists, ranging from hiring discrimination to differences in educational attainment, but none are considered definitive by experts.

For Hispanics, the unemployment rate dropped sharply in August, after Hispanic unemployment briefly exceeded that of black workers for the first time ever in April and May.

The unemployment rate for Hispanics tumbled to 10.5 percent from 12.9 percent in July.

One million more Hispanics reported having jobs in August, a 4 percent increase from July.

Hispanics are disproportionately likely to work in the kinds of services jobs - at restaurants or construction sites, for example - that have been returning as businesses reopen. 

Although Asians typically had the lowest unemployment rate of any racial group prior to the pandemic, the Asian unemployment rate remained higher than the national average in August, at 10.7 percent.

Meanwhile, the gap between the female and male jobless rate narrowed to just a third of a percentage point in August.

The female unemployment rate declined to 8.6 percent from 10.6 percent the prior month. The male rate fell to 8.3 percent from 9.8 percent in July.

Before the pandemic, fewer women were unemployed than men.

The unemployment gap between people with college degrees and those with a high school diploma remained large in August, with high school grads unemployed at a rate 1.8 times higher than their college grad peers.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8739459/Unemployment-gap-black-white-workers-widens-nearly-DOUBLE.html

14
Off-Topic / White House says coronavirus vaccines will ship within 24 HOURS of FDA approval
« on: September 16, 2020, 11:15:54 am »Message ID: 1339350
White House says coronavirus vaccines will ship within 24 HOURS of FDA approval as it unveils 'playbook' to start giving FREE coronavirus immunizations to all Americans by January (all we need now is a vaccine!)

* Health officials and the Department of Defense outlined their 'playbook' for states to start giving out free coronavirus
   vaccines before Congress Wednesday
* The Pentagon will help roll out the shots which will be administered by health workers
* Americans could start getting vaccinated as early as January of next year or late this year
* Vaccination will not be required, but anyone who wants a shot will be able to get it for free
* Multiple drugmakers will provide shots to the US, with most coming in two doses delivered 21 to 28 days apart

The Trump administration plans to start shipping coronavirus vaccines within 24 hours of approval from regulators, the government announced Wednesday in its 'playbook' to make vaccines for COVID-19 available for free to all Americans as early as January.   

In accompanying testimony before a Senate committee, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) director Robert Redfield said a vaccine likely won't be available to the public until spring or summer of 2021.

No companies have completed testing for their coronavirus vaccines or gotten Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for them.

Yet Trump has continued to insist that a vaccine will be ready in a matter of weeks - ahead of Election Day on November 3. 

In a report to Congress and an accompanying 'playbook' for states and localities, federal health agencies and the Defense Department sketched out complex plans for a vaccination campaign to begin gradually in January or possibly later this year, eventually ramping up to reach any American who wants a shot.

Vaccines will be available to anyone, regardless of whether or not they have health insurance. 

Whenever a vaccine to combat the virus that has infected more than 6.6 million Americans and killed nearly 196,000 people in the US, the Pentagon plans to be involved with the distribution of vaccines, but civilian health workers will be the ones giving shots.

The campaign is 'much larger in scope and complexity than seasonal influenza or other previous outbreak-related vaccination responses,' said the playbook for states from the CDC.

President Trump tweeted: 'Vaccines are moving along fast and safely!' following the report's presentation on Wednesday, as the US recorded an uptick of more than 51,000 cases and over 1,400 deaths over the past 24 hours.

Among the highlights in the 'playbook':

For most vaccines, people will need two doses, 21 to 28 days apart. Double-dose vaccines will have to come from the same drugmaker. There could be several vaccines from different manufacturers approved and available.
Vaccination of the U.S. population won't be a sprint but a marathon. Initially there may be a limited supply of vaccines available, and the focus will be on protecting health workers, other essential employees, and people in vulnerable groups. The National Academy of Medicine is working on priorities for the first phase. A second and third phase would expand vaccination to the entire country.
The vaccine itself will be free of charge, and patients won't be charged out of pocket for the administration of shots, thanks to billions of dollars in taxpayer funding approved by Congress and allocated by the Trump administration.
States and local communities will need to devise precise plans for receiving and locally distributing vaccines, some of which will require special handling such as refrigeration or freezing. States and cities have a month to submit plans.

Some of the broad components of the federal plan have already been discussed, but Wednesday's reports attempt to put the key details into a comprehensive framework.

Nonetheless, some experts are concerned that these plans are being made and presented prematurely.

'Isn't this putting the cart before the horse?' Dr Peter Hotez, dean of the Baylor College of Medicine's National School of Tropical Medicine, said in an interview with DailyMail.com.

'We don't really understand the full extent of efficacy or safety of these vaccines, and each vaccine may be different.

'Some may prevent infection versus some [others that] will reduce the severity of illness. So it's very complicated to understand the different variations in terms of efficacy and safety and come up with a full plan.'

Dr Hotez also questioned the impetus for the report, wondering whether Congress had asked to see a plan like that laid out on Wednesday, or if it was something 'the WHite House is promoting.'

Either way, 'this is unprecedented,' he said. 

Distribution is happening under the umbrella of Operation Warp Speed, a White House-backed initiative to have millions of doses ready to ship once a vaccine is given what's expected to be an emergency use approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Several formulations are undergoing final trials.

But the whole enterprise is facing public skepticism. Only about half of Americans said they'd get vaccinated in an Associated Press poll taken in May.

Of those who wouldn't get vaccinated, the overwhelming majority said they were worried about safety.

To effectively protect the nation from the coronavirus, experts say upwards of 70 percent of Americans must either be vaccinated or have their own immunity from fighting off COVID-19.

Since the poll, questions have only mounted about whether the government is trying to rush COVID-19 treatments and vaccines to help President Donald Trump's reelection chances.

Before the Republican National Convention in August, the FDA granted authorization for treatment of COVID-19 patients with plasma from people who have recovered, even though some government scientists were not convinced the clinical evidence was sufficiently strong.

And last week it was reported that Michael Caputo, a Health and Human Services (HHS) Department political appointee, tried to gain editorial control over a weekly scientific publication from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

As public confidence in core health agencies has taken a beating, Trump administration officials have been forced to play defense.

'We are working closely with our state and local public health partners...to ensure that Americans can receive the vaccine as soon as possible and vaccinate with confidence,' HHS Secretary Alex Azar said in a statement Wednesday.

'Americans should know that the vaccine development process is being driven completely by science and the data.'

That could be a tough sell. In the AP poll, one in five Americans said they would not get a coronavirus vaccine, and 31 percent said they were unsure.

And the timeline for vaccine approval being touted by Trump is suspiciously serendipitous.

In late August, the CDC sent guidance to US states instructing them to prepare for the possible approval and arrival of coronavirus vaccines as early as the end of October. 

The announcement was met with outcry and skepticism from many health experts, appalled that the CDC would tease an arrival date for shots before any have been approved by the FDA regulators and concerned that the rush to get a shot approved by the end of next month could result in an unsafe, unproven vaccine. 

Many, including Dr Hotez, speculated that it was a politically-motivated timeline after the documents detailing instructions for the states were leaked to the New York Times.

Subsequently, Trump hinted that vaccines could be approved 'before a very special date,' likely referring to the November 3 election.

In response, nine major companies developing coronavirus vaccines - including Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Moderna, which are currently leading the shot development race - pledged that they would not seek approval for a shot without being absolutely certain their respective vaccines were safe.

Top health officials, including Surgeon General Dr Jerome Adams, vaccine czar Dr Moncef Slaoui and Dr Anthony Fauci said it possible, but unlikely that a COVID-19 vaccine would be ready that early - although Dr Fauci also acknowledged that a company could end its vaccine trial early, expediting the approval process, if there was overwhelming evidence that the vaccine worked, and was safe.

US Reports An Uptick In Average Daily COVID-19 Cases And Deaths For The First Time Since July As North Dakota, Wisconsin And South Carolina All Record Single-Day Highs

The United States is showing a slight uptick in the average number of daily coronavirus cases and deaths - as about 20 states reported increases in new infections in the past week.

The average number of infections per day was at more than 37,000 on Tuesday after increasing steadily since the weekend.

Cases, on average, have been trending downwards nationally since July when about 70,000 infections were being reported daily. 

Daily deaths are now averaging at just over 840 per day after the average number of fatalities dropped to 720 a week ago.

Deaths in the US have been declining steadily since mid-August when an average of 1,000 American were dying each day.

More than 195,000 Americans have now died from COVID-19 and there has been over 6.6 million infections.

The uptick in cases comes after health officials had warned there could be increases following the Labor Day weekend.     

It comes as 20 states reported an uptick in cases within the last week with North Dakota, Wisconsin and South Carolina all recording single-day highs in new infections.

South Carolina's infection peaked at 2,454 on September 11 with the state now recording more than 133,00 cases.

North Dakota's cases spiked to a record 467 on September 12 and now total more than 16,000.

Cases in Wisconsin surged to a single day high of 1,624 on September 13. Infections in the state have risen 38 per cent in the last week, bringing the total to more than 96,900.

Twelve of the 20 states that have seen increases in the last week have high case numbers in relation to the population.

They include North Dakota, Wisconsin, South Carolina, Missouri, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee, Nebraska, Kentucky, Utah and Louisiana.   

An indoor event in Henderson, Nevada drew thousands on Sunday.

Trump on Monday also drew hundreds of supporters to an indoor event in Phoenix, Arizona that his campaign advertised as a 'Latinos for Trump roundtable'.

Trump has made the case that if demonstrators can gather en masse for protests over racial injustice, so can his supporters. His campaign has insisted that it takes appropriate health precautions, including handing out masks and hand sanitizer and checking the temperatures of those in attendance.

It comes after it emerged last week that Trump had referred to the virus as 'deadly stuff' in a private conversation with Bernstein's former reporting partner Bob Woodward.

Trump, at the same time, was publicly downplaying the threat of COVID-19.

Three days after delivering his 'deadly' assessment in a private call with Woodward, he told a New Hampshire rally on February 10 that 'it's going to be fine'.

Trump's acknowledgment in Woodward's new book 'Rage' that he was minimizing the severity of the virus in public to avoid causing panic has triggered waves of criticism that he wasn't leveling with the American people.

The president told Woodward on March 19 that he had deliberately minimized the danger. 'I wanted to always play it down,' the president said. 'I still like playing it down because I don´t want to create a panic.'   

15
Off-Topic / Donald Trump pays tribute to passengers of United flight 93 who 'took charge and
« on: September 11, 2020, 10:48:46 am »Message ID: 1338975
Donald Trump pays tribute to passengers of United flight 93 who 'took charge and changed the course of history forever' by overpowering hijackers before jet reached Washington at ceremony in Shanksville - as Pence and Biden mourn in NYC

* Donald Trump delivered a sobering, patriotic speech at a memorial service in Shanksville, Pennsylvania
* The president paid tribute to those who died on Flight 93 during the September 11th attacks
* 'The heroes of Flight 93 are an everlasting reminder that no matter the danger, no matter the threat, no matter the
    odds, America will always rise up, stand tall, and fight back,' he said
* Meanwhile, Joe Biden and Mike Pence marked the 19th anniversary at a memorial ceremony at Ground Zero
* This year's September 11 memorial was altered in order to adhere to safety precautions around COVID-19
* Mourners gathered at the 9/11 museum where they listened to a pre-recorded reading of the names
* A military flyover expected to take place on Friday has been canceled following backlash
* City officials announced an F-18 jet was scheduled to conduct a flyover on the Hudson River on Friday
* The idea drew criticism on social media, with many calling the event 'insensitive' and 'tasteless'

President Donald Trump on Friday vowed that America will always 'rise up' and 'fight back' when under attack as he paid tribute to the 40 people who died on United Flight 93 when they brought down the plane in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

In a sobering and patriotic speech at the national memorial, Trump praised the '40 towering patriots' who he said 'took charge and changed the course of history forever' as al Qaeda hijackers were flying the plane toward Washington.

'The heroes of Flight 93 are an everlasting reminder that no matter the danger, no matter the threat, no matter the odds, America will always rise up, stand tall, and fight back,' the president said.

'The only thing that stood between the enemy and a deadly strike at the heart of American democracy was the courage and resolve of 40 men and women.'

'Our sacred task, our righteous duty, and our solemn pledge, is to carry forward the noble legacy of the brave souls who gave their lives for us 19 years ago,' he said.

'In their memory, we resolve to stand united as one American nation, to defend our freedoms - to uphold our values - to love our neighbors - to cherish our country - to care for our communities - to honor our heroes - and to never forget.'

After he spoke, he and first lady Melania Trump laid a wreath at the Flight 93 Memorial, which contains the names of those who died. A bag piper played 'Amazing Grace.'

During his remarks, the president also paid tribute to the members of the military that lost their lives in the wake of the terrorists attacks.

'More than 7,000 Military Heroes have laid down their lives since 9/11 to preserve our freedom,' Trump said.

'No words can express the summit of their glory or the infinite depth of our gratitude. But we will strive every single day to repay our immeasurable debt and prove worthy of their supreme sacrifice.'

Trump also offered words to the unit the country on its day of mourning.

'We were united by our conviction that America was the world's most exceptional country, blessed with the most incredible heroes, and that this was a land worth defending with our very last breath. It was a unity based on love for our families, care for our neighbors, loyalty to our fellow citizens, pride in our flag, gratitude for our police and first responders, faith in God - and a refusal to bend our will to the depraved forces of violence, intimidation, oppression and evil,' he said.

'When terrorists raced to destroy the seat of our democracy, the 40 of flight 93 did the most American of things, they took a vote and then they acted,' Trump added.

Trump's visit kicked off a day of memorial services expected to take place at the memorial sites of the 9/11 attacks in Pennsylvania, New York City and at the Pentagon in Washington, as well as across the country. 

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is expected to visit the Shanksville memorial later in the afternoon, after attending the 9/11 Memorial & Museum's annual commemoration at Ground Zero in New York, along with Vice President Mike Pence.

The president and first lady Melania Trump also observed a moment of silence aboard Air Force One at 8.46am, marking the time the first plane hit the World Trade Center 19 years ago.

It was a different display in Lower Manhattan at the Ground Zero ceremony, where public officials were not part of the program. Biden nonetheless consoled family members in the audience.

While Trump and Biden's visit will not overlap, Pence and Biden's did. In a rare moment of detente, Biden was seen approaching Pence after arriving at the ceremony and tapping him on the shoulder to say hello.

Wearing masks, the current and former vice president then shared an elbow bump - the popular COVID-era handshake replacement - as did Biden and second lady Karen Pence.

Although the candidates and country will be focused on the commemorations, the political significance of their visits to Shanksville is hard to ignore, with Pennsylvania being a crucial battleground state.

Biden however, insisted that he would steer clear of politics on a national day of mourning.

'I'm not gonna make any news today. I'm not gonna talk about anything other than 9/11,' he told reporters. 'We took all our advertising down, it's a solemn day, and that's how we're going to keep it, OK?'

Victims' relatives gathered for split-screen remembrances, one at the September 11 memorial plaza at the World Trade Center and another on a nearby corner, set up by a separate organization.

The Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation objected to the memorial's decision to forgo a longstanding tradition of having relatives read the names of the dead, often adding poignant tributes. 

Memorial leaders said they made the change as a coronavirus-safety precaution on the 19th anniversary of the deadliest terror attack on U.S. soil.

At the September 11 Memorial and Museum, mourners stood silently as they listened to a pre-recorded reading of the names - a plan that organizers felt would avoid close contact at a stage but still allow families to remember their loved ones at the place where they died.

But some felt the change robbed the observance of its emotional impact.

The Tunnel to Towers Foundation arranged its own, simultaneous ceremony a few blocks away, saying there was no reason that people couldn't recite names while keeping a safe distance.

Reverence for the dead 'requires that we read these names out loud, in person, every year,' said foundation chair Frank Siller, whose brother Stephen was a firefighter.

The readers stood at podiums that were wiped down between each person.

Biden offered condolences to a woman he spotted crying in the crowd of hundreds, Amanda Barreto, who lost her aunt and godmother in the attacks.

Barreto, 27, said Biden 'wanted to let me know to keep the faith' and 'wanted me to say strong,' telling her he understood what it meant to lose a loved one. His first wife and their daughter died in a 1972 car crash, and his son Beau died of brain cancer in 2015.

Biden didn't speak at the ceremony, which has a longstanding custom of not allowing politicians to make remarks.

He also told the reporters traveling with him what the day means to him: 'It means I remember all my friends that I lost.'

'It takes a lot of courage for someone that lost someone to come back today,' Biden continued. 'I know from experience, losing my wife, my daughter, my son, you relive it, the moment as if it's happening. It's hard.

'It's a wonderful memorial, but it's hard. It just brings you back to the moment it happened, no matter how long, how much time passes. So I admire the families who come.'

Trump's Full Speech At The Flight 93 National Memorial 

Thank you. Thank you very much. Thank you, David, very much. It's a great honor to be with you. Nineteen years ago, on this day, at this very hour, on this field, 40 brave men and women triumphed over terror and gave their lives in defense of our nation. Their names and their stories are forever inscribed on the eternal roll call of American heroes. Today, we pay tribute to their sacrifice, and we mourn deeply for the nearly 3,000 precious and beautiful souls who were taken from us on September 11th, 2001. To the family members of Flight 93: Today, every heartbeat in America is wedded to yours. Your pain and anguish is the shared grief of our whole nation. The memory of your treasured loved ones will inspire America for all time to come. The heroes of Flight 93 are an everlasting reminder that no matter the danger, no matter the threat, no matter the odds, America will always rise up, stand tall, and fight back.

To every 9/11 member all across this nation: The First Lady and I come to this hallowed ground deeply aware that we cannot fill the void in your heart or erase the terrible sorrow of this day. The agony renewed, the nightmare relived, the wounds reopened, the last treasured words played over and over again in your minds. But while we cannot erase your pain, we can help to shoulder your burden. We promise that unwavering love that you so want and need, support, devotion -- and the very special devotion -- of all Americans. On that September morning, when America was under attack, the battle turned in the skies above this field. Soon after taking off from Newark, New Jersey, radical Islamic terrorists seized control of United 93. Other hijacked planes struck the North Tower of the World Trade Center, and then the South Tower, and then the Pentagon. The terrorists on Flight 93 had a fourth target in mind.

It was called: our nation's capital. They were just 20 minutes away from reaching their sinister objective. The only thing that stood between the enemy and a deadly strike at the heart of American democracy was the courage and resolve of 40 men and women -- the amazing passengers and crew of Flight 93. Donald and Jean Peterson were grandparents traveling to vacation in California. Deora Bodley was a student headed back to college. Richard Guadagno was returning from celebrating his grandmother's 100th birthday. Lauren Catuzzi Grandcolas was three months pregnant with her first child. Every passenger and crewmember on the plane had a life filled with love and joy, friends and family, radiant hopes and limitless dreams. When the plane was hijacked, they called their families and learned that America was also under attack.

Then they faced the most fateful moment of their lives. Through the heartache and the tears, they prayed to God, they placed their last calls home, they whispered the immortal words, 'I love you.' Today, those words ring out across these sacred grounds, and they shine down on us from Heaven above. When terrorists raced to destroy the seat of our democracy, the 40 of Flight 93 did the most American of things: They took a vote, and then they acted. Together, they charged the cockpit, they confronted the pure evil, and in their last act on this Earth, they saved our capital. In this Pennsylvania field, the 40 intrepid souls of Flight 93 died as true heroes. Their momentous deeds will outlive us all.

In the days and weeks after 9/11, citizens of all faiths, backgrounds, colors, and creeds came together, prayed together, mourned together, and rebuilt together. The song 'God Bless America' became a rallying cry for the nation. We were united by our conviction that America was the world's most exceptional country, blessed with the most incredible heroes, and that this was a land worth defending with our very last breath. It was a unity based on love for our families, care for our neighbors, loyalty to our fellow citizens, pride in our great flag, gratitude for our police and first responders, faith in God, and a refusal to bend our will to the depraved forces of violence, intimidation, oppression, and evil. In New York, Arlington, and Shanksville, people raced into the suffocating smoke and rubble. At Ground Zero, the world witnessed the miracle of American courage and sacrifice. As ash rained down, police officers, first responders, and firefighters ran into the fires of hell. On that day, more than 400 first responders gave their lives, including 23 New York City police officers, 37 Port Authority workers, and 343 New York City firefighters.

Today, we honor their extraordinary sacrifice and every first responder who keeps America safe. With us today is David DeMato, a retired Chicago police officer and a current officer of the Navy Reserves. On 9/11, he drove from Chicago to Ground Zero. As David says, 'While the sights and smells of working at Ground Zero will forever be etched in my mind, what is more profound is the way this country came together afterwards. The police officers and firemen were revered as the heroes they truly are; the military was appreciated in a manner not seen in decades; and common people found new meaning in values like friendship, kindness, and selflessness.' Thank you, David. Such beautiful words. And thank you to every member of law enforcement who risks their lives to ensure our safety and uphold our peace. This morning, we also remember the 183 people who were killed in the attack on the Pentagon and the remarkable service members who crawled straight through the raging blaze to rescue their comrades. We express our undying loyalty to the nearly 6 million young men and women who have enlisted in the United States armed forces since September 11th, 2001. More than 7,000 military heroes have laid down their lives since 9/11 to preserve our freedom.

No words can express the summit of their glory or the infinite depth of our gratitude. But we will strive every single day to repay our immeasurable debt and prove worthy of their supreme sacrifice. America will never relent in pursuing terrorists that threaten our people. Less than one year ago, American warriors took out the savage killer and leader of ISIS, Al-Baghdadi. Soon after, our warriors ended the brutal reign of the Iranian butcher who murdered thousands of American service members. The world's top terrorist, Qasem Soleimani, is dead. Here in Shanksville, this community locked arms and hearts in the wake of tragedy. With us today is Chuck Wagner, a heavy equipment operator who lives just a few miles away. Very soon after the attack, Chuck helped search for the black box. He was so changed by what he experienced that he joined with several members of his church to become what they call 'Ambassadors' for the 40 men and women on Flight 93. Chuck and his neighbors learned about each person, cared for their families, and each day, rain or shine, they took shifts standing vigil over their final resting place. Long before this place was a national memorial, back when it was marked by a simple wooden cross, Chuck and his fellow Ambassadors were always here waiting to tell visitors about those we lost. Nineteen years later, Chuck says his life is devoted to three things: his family, his church, and preserving the memory of the men and women of Flight 93.

To Chuck, his wife Jayne -- (applause) -- thank you very much. Thank you very much. To Chuck and his wife Jayne, thank you so much for being here. And to the over 40 Ambassadors with us today, please stand and receive America's thanks. And this is a very deep thanks. Please. (Applause.) Thank you very much. Also with us is Marine veteran Jason Thomas, from Long Island. On September 11th, Jason had just retired from the Marines. But he immediately put back on his uniform and raced into the nightmare of ash and debris. At Ground Zero, he found a fellow Marine, Dave Karnes. Together, they began to call out: 'United States Marines! United States Marines! If you can hear us, yell, tap. Do whatever you can do. We're the United States Marines.' Soon they heard a shout for help. Two police officers were trapped beneath 20 feet of rubble. Jason and Dave dug for hours on end knowing that, at any moment, the wreckage could come down on them, crushing them alive. At one point, someone told Jason to stop. Jason replied, 'I'm a Marine. I don't go back. I go forward.' That day, Jason helped save the lives of those two officers. For years, Jason said nothing about what he did on 9/11. He did not even tell his five children. But when he saw the rescue recounted on TV, he decided to meet those officers.

One of them gave him a gift: a steel cross made from a beam that Jason helped lift to free them from the hell on Earth. As Jason said about the cross, 'It means a lot. It's a symbol of what we are as Americans. Because that day, we all came together and stood as a nation, as Americans. It didn't matter what race you were, what religion you were. It didn't matter. We all came together to help one another. I'd die for this country. I'd die for this country.' Jason, thank you very much for bearing witness to the character of our nation. Jason, thank you very much. (Applause.) Thank you very much. Thank you, Jason. The men and women of Flight 93 were mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, husbands and wives. Nothing could have prepared them for the dreadful events of that morning.

But when the moment came, when history called, they did not hesitate, they did not waver. Forty towering patriots rose up, took charge, made their stand, turned the tide, and changed the course of history forever. Our sacred task, our righteous duty, and our solemn pledge is to carry forward the noble legacy of the brave souls who gave their lives for us 19 years ago. In their memory, we resolve to stand united as one American nation, to defend our freedoms, to uphold our values, to love our neighbors, to cherish our country, to care for our communities, to honor our heroes, and to never, ever forget. Thank you. God bless you. God bless the heroes of Flight 93. God bless all of the families. 9/11 -- we'll never forget. God bless you all, and God bless America. Thank you very much. (Applause.)

Pence went on to the Tunnel to Towers Foundation ceremony, where he read the Bible's 23rd Psalm, and his wife, Karen, read a passage from the Book of Ecclesiastes.

'For the families of the lost and friends they left behind, I pray these ancient words will comfort your heart and others,' said the vice president, drawing applause from the crowd of hundreds.

In short, the anniversary of 9/11 is a complicated occasion in a maelstrom of a year, as the U.S. grapples with a health crisis, searches its soul over racial injustice and prepares to choose a leader to chart a path forward.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8722731/Planned-9-11-military-flyover-2500ft-NYC-prompts-outrage.html

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