Why are Donald Trump and Senate Republicans blocking an FBI investigation of the sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh? Former White House associate counsel Sarah Baker has a simple answer on that one: “The only reason you don’t ask is if you don’t want the answer.” But Republicans don’t want the answer, as they’ve made repeatedly clear, from their smears of Christine Blasey Ford to their lies about this not being something the FBI would investigate if asked to (which is, again, false) to their insistence on putting Ford at the same table with the man she’d be describing violently assaulting her. An FBI investigation would mean a significant loss of privacy for Ford, but she’s still calling for it, while Trump, who would need to request the investigation, refuses. Even if Republicans are insistent on sticking to a Monday hearing, though, there’s still time for an investigation: "They could assign 100 agents to this and be done in two days,” said Tom Fuentes, a former FBI assistant director who once led its organized crime program. An investigation of something that happened 35 years ago might well be inconclusive … yet Trump and Republicans are clearly terrified of what it would find. At some point you have to figure they have a reason for that.
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The Daily Kos Elections Morning Digest is compiled by David Nir, Jeff Singer, Stephen Wolf, and Carolyn Fiddler, with additional contributions from David Jarman, Steve Singiser, Daniel Donner, James Lambert, David Beard, and Arjun Jaikumar. Leading Off ● FL-27: We have dueling internal polls in Florida's GOP-held 27th District, and both of them suggest that Democrats are going to have a tougher time flipping this Miami-area seat than observers thought. Campaign Action Republican Maria Elvira Salazar released a mid-September survey from McLaughlin & Associates showing her up 51-42 over Democrat Donna Shalala, who responded with an early-September poll from Bendixen & Amandi International giving herself a 46-42 advantage, with 8 percent going to unheralded pro-Trump candidate Mayra Joli. McLaughlin has a reputation for wildly inaccurate polls and has had no qualms about working as the pollster for far-right Hungarian autocrat Viktor Orban in that country's highly flawed spring election. That said, these results aren't exactly reassuring for Shalala. This heavily Cuban-American district backed Hillary Clinton by 58-38, and although local Republicans have long done better than Trump's awful performance here, even Cuban-American GOP Sen. Marco Rubio lost the 27th by 49.2-48.6 in 2016 despite his 52-44 statewide win. All that should make this open seat one of Democrats' best pickup opportunities nationwide, but a recent Politico profile of Shalala's candidacy gives cause for concern. Notably, local Democrats expressed worry that Shalala's campaign just doesn’t have its act together. One longtime Shalala critic complained that her campaign is in “sleep mode” and has yet to wake up, and Politico writes that unnamed party insiders agree. Shalala, who is of Lebanese descent, also doesn’t speak Spanish, which could be a big obstacle in a district where the census estimates that 65 percent of adult citizens are Hispanic or Latino. By contrast, Salazar is a Cuban-American who has worked as a journalist for Telemundo and Univision, and she is at ease switching between English and Spanish-language media. Salazar also has the support of retiring GOP Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a vocal Trump critic who has long been popular in this area. Shalala could also be still hurt from lingering hostilities from the bruising Aug. 28 primary, where her opponents hammered her with more than $1 million in negative TV ads and mailers. Shalala only won by a surprisingly weak 32-27 over state Rep. David Richardson in the primary, while Salazar more comfortably prevailed over a damaged foe who had little money to bombard her with negative ads. Shalala could thus pick up more support as memories of the primary fade. Shalala's standing may also improve if she begins heavily airing ads promoting her candidacy and tying her opponent to Trump, who almost certainly remains very unpopular here. Shalala, a former head of the Clinton Foundation, is very well-connected and raised plenty of money during the primary, so she at least shouldn’t need to worry about being able to afford ad time. For now at least, major outside party groups are focusing their attention in the neighboring 26th District and haven’t spent here, so it's possible they don’t think Shalala is in as much trouble as even her poll suggests she’s in. Daily Kos Elections currently rates this contest as Likely Democratic, but we're keeping an eye on all these developments.
E.J. Dionne Jr. says today in his column that the most infuriating aspect of the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is the GOP’s insistence that their speedy timeline must be kept. You know, the one that—before the midterms—adds this right-wing extremist judge to the extremist judges already on the court. Republicans become irked when anybody mentions another GOP confirmation timeline—the one that kept the moderate Merrick Garland from getting a hearing for nine-and-a-half months. As much as it raises my blood pressure, I can’t quite agree that this is the most infuriating element of the hearings. In fact, it’s hard to prioritize what’s worst when the candidate is a perjurer with an agenda who likes to pretend he doesn’t have one. Then there’s the fury from the fact that Republican senators and the party’s media sycophants have been behaving exactly like everyone who has ever reported a sexual assault knew they would behave regarding Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s stepping forward with her own report of an attempted rape by Kavanaugh at a high school party. The outpouring of disinformation, initiated or amplified by social media, is just part of the what amounts to an assault of its own. A quarter-century ago, in the wake of the confirmation hearings for Clarence Thomas and the public slamming of Anita Hill for her testimony asserting that Thomas had sexually harassed her for years, Judith Lewis Herman wrote Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence - From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror. She succinctly described what Thomas and his supporters did and what Republicans and their favored pundits are doing now regarding Dr. Blasey Ford: “In order to escape accountability for his crimes, the perpetrator does everything in his power to promote forgetting. Secrecy and silence are the perpetrator’s first line of defense. If secrecy fails, the perpetrator attacks the credibility of his victim. If he cannot silence her absolutely, he tries to make sure that no one listens. To this end, he marshals an impressive array of arguments, from the most blatant denial to the most sophisticated and elegant rationalization. After every atrocity one can expect to hear the same predictable apologies: it never happened; the victim lies; the victim exaggerates; the victim brought it upon herself; and in any case it is time to forget the past and move on. The more powerful the perpetrator, the greater is his prerogative to name and define reality, and the more completely his arguments prevail.” xThese are the 12 white, Republican men who will be questioning Christine Blasey Ford on the Senate Judiciary committee.Retweet if this DISGUSTS you! pic.twitter.com/qvk2J3iBl4— Ã°ÂÂ¦Â Cathleen Burke Ã°ÂÂ¦Â (@ItsMeCathi) September 19, 2018
The head of the Russian Liberal Democratic Party (LDPR) says candidates in regional elections that have been canceled over violations should be legally barred from running again. Read Full Article at RT.com
The Russian Supreme Court recommends that judges, who preside over trials concerning internet reposts of extremist material, estimate the suspects’ level of threat to society and stop using experts’ assessments in final rulings. Read Full Article at RT.com
This is no ordinary bundle. Every work here was controversial, challenged or even outright banned. Combined value: $261.
«We will debut some new features and products related to the Amazon devices business,» Amazon tells us ahead of a surprise event starting this morning at 10:30 a.m. PT.
Expect to see plenty of new Alexa-powered devices -- and maybe even a microwave.
The government announced a merger of the three entities earlier this week, which will create the country's third-biggest lender
However, Kumar said India needs to reduce the number of state-owned banks through consolidation for better management
A 'naked,' wormlike creature that lived in the ocean 520 million years ago was so defenseless, it likely lived as a recluse, evading hungry predators by hiding in dark crevices or among clusters of sponges, a new study finds.
MariaDB, the company behind the eponymous MySQL drop-in replacement database, today announced that it has acquired Clusterix, which itself is a MySQL drop-in replacement database, but with a focus on scalability. MariaDB will integrate Clusterix’s technology into its own database, which will allow it to offer its users a more scalable database service in the long […]
Designing for digital interfaces has come a long way since the first days of the web, but there remains a place for tech that can help navigate us through what are sometimes still bloated or complicated services (notwithstanding those that are deliberately so). Today, one of the more successful startups working in this area has raised a […]
A few minutes of high-intensity interval or sprinting exercise may be as effective as much longer exercise sessions in spurring beneficial improvements in mitochondrial function, according to new research.
A recent study of more than 100 years of river level records from the Amazon shows a significant increase in frequency and severity of floods.
Facebook has been singled out for censure by the European Commission’s head of consumer affairs who has warned she’s running out of patience and said the company needs to make additional changes to its terms of service before the end of the year to bring them into line with the bloc’s consumer rules. The Commission […]
No one would ever be surprised that Japanese high school students are taking impressive fashion risks. The area is known for its bizarre fashion, after all, especially in places like Harajuku and Shinjuku […] The post Japanese High Schooler Took a Fashion Risk That Paid Off appeared first on Geek.com.
THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) - Dozens of cruise ship passengers who fell ill during their voyage were temporarily held on board Thursday after the liner moored in the Dutch port city of Rotterdam. The sickened passengers were on board the AIDAperla. The ship's German operator Aida Cruises said in a ...
MELBOURNE, Fla. (AP) - A 26-year-old student pilot boarded a vacant Airbus 321 American Airlines aircraft in a maintenance facility early Thursday disrupting travel at Orlando-Melbourne International Airport, police and airport officials said. The student drove to the curb outside the airport early Thursday, left his car running, hopped a ...
WILMINGTON, N.C. (AP) - The Latest on Florence (all times local): 8:30 a.m. A section of Interstate 95 in South Carolina has been closed because of flooding. The Department of Public Safety said Wednesday evening that the highway was closed in both directions at the 175 mile marker because of ...
Rick and Morty lends itself extremely well to anime. You wouldn’t think it could possibly work, but just take a look at this “If Rick and Morty was An Anime” video from artist […] The post This Fanmade Rick and Morty Anime Opening is Absolutely Perfect appeared first on Geek.com.
THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) - Dutch emergency services say that dozens of sick passengers on a cruise ship that has moored in Rotterdam have been kept onboard for treatment. The sickened passengers were on board the AIDAperla, which arrived in Rotterdam on Thursday morning. The ship's German operator Aida Cruises ...
Manuel Charr's WBA heavyweight bout against American fighter Fres Oquendo has been called off after the defending champion failed a doping test
Cris Carter and Nick Wright talk NBA. Nick Wright reacts to Jimmy Butler's trade request from the Minnesota Timberwolves.
No. 23 Boston College ended a decade-long absence by appearing in the Top 25 this week and now heads to Purdue trying to go 4-0 for the first time since 2007
VICTORIA, Seychelles (AP) - The World Anti-Doping Agency has reinstated Russia, ending a nearly three-year suspension caused by state-sponsored doping. WADA says its 12-member executive committee voted to reinstate the Russian Anti-Doping Agency «subject to strict conditions.» WADA's move came despite a wave of fierce criticism from anti-doping figures - ...
Following a discussion in the drivers' briefing after first practice last weekend, the FIA added a white line beyond the existing kerbing at the outside of Turn 7. Its purpose was to act as a visual indicator of track limits to deter drivers from breaking the rules. A number of drivers believed that as the track rubbered in, some of them might be tempted to carry too much speed through the ... ... Keep reading