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Showing posts from November, 2018

Dallas police woman who shot man in his apartment indicted for murder

CNN:
A police officer who claimed she killed a Dallas man in his own apartment in the mistaken belief that he was in her home was indicted Friday on a murder charge, authorities said.

The indictment of Amber Guyger comes more than two months after she was arrested in the shooting death of Botham Shem Jean at the Dallas apartment complex where both lived -- a killing that sparked days of protests.

Guyger was arrested after the September shooting and charged with manslaughter by the Texas Rangers, the lead investigative agency, Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson said at a news conference.

When asked why the grand jury indicted Guyger on the more serious offense of murder, Johnson replied, "We presented the evidence and we explained the law."
Johnson said murder constitutes someone "intentionally and knowingly" committing a crime, whereas manslaughter involves "recklessly doing something."

"At the moment of the shooting it was a knowing ... o…

A deeply flawed climate study

Cal Thomas:
...
Responding to the government report, ClimateDepot.com, my favorite website with links to knowledgeable and skeptical scientists, notes:

The National Climate Assessment report as reviewed by the National Academy of Sciences, is basing one of its headline scare scenario(s) on a study funded by climate activist billionaire Tom Steyer. Climate expert Dr. Roger Pielke Jr. noted on November 24 that the claim of economic damage from climate change is based on a 15 degree F temperature increase that is double the ‘most extreme value reported elsewhere in the report.’ The ‘sole editor’ of this claim in the report was an alum of the Center for American Progress, which is also funded by Tom Steyer.
Climatologist Pat Michaels calls the government report “systematically flawed” and says it “should be shelved.”
...

Climate Depot founder Marc Morano says of the government report:

It is a political report masquerading as science. The media is hyping a rehash of frightening climate chang…

What is the Democrats' plan to deal with border enforcement?--Give them a voter registration card?

John Kass:
f there is one thing worse than that photograph of a little Honduran boy breathing through an oxygen mask after being hit with tear gas on our Southern border, it’s this:

Using that image as a sentimental weapon to fend off or obliterate clearheaded immigration policy.

But that’s where we are now, aren’t we? The caravan of thousands of Central American migrants is finally at the border. Mexico is keeping them back. The other day, after rocks were thrown at American border officials, several hundred migrants bolted through, trying to illegally rush their way into America, and some were hit with tear gas.

One was the little boy in the photo, receiving medical care in Tijuana. Mexico has made arrests and is in the process of deporting about 100 of the migrants back to Central America.

And now, the left has no answers to what’s going on along the southern border. Instead, we’re given shrieks of rage at President Donald Trump. They conveniently forget that under President Barack…

Marriage license clerk and supervisor in Washington, D.C. shocked to learn that New Mexico is a US state

Fox News:
A New Mexico resident didn’t just have to prove his love before getting married – he had to prove New Mexico is actually a state.

When Gavin Clarkson and his future bride applied for a marriage license in Washington, D.C., earlier this month, he was told he needed to provide an international passport to be approved.

“You know you are from flyover country when you are applying for a marriage license, give them your New Mexico driver’s license, and they come back and say ‘my supervisor says we cannot accept international driver’s licenses. Do you have a New Mexico passport?’” Clarkson said in a Nov. 20 Facebook post.
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Clarkson, a former deputy assistant secretary in the Interior Department, told the Las Cruces Sun-News the clerk checked with a supervisor several times before the office was able to confirm New Mexico has, in fact, been a state for 106 years.
...
“The new Mrs. Clarkson thinks that the most hilarious part was when the clerk complimented me on my English,” Clar…

Dershowitz says Mueller is manufacturing crimes not investigating them

Breitbart:
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”I think the weakness of Mueller’s substantive findings are suggested by the fact that he has to resort to false statement prosecutions, which really shows that he didn’t start with very much, and that the very fact that he’s conducting an investigation has created these crimes,” Dershowitz told Bill Hemmer. “These are not crimes that had been committed prior to his appointment, they’re crimes that were committed as the result of his appointment, and that raises some questions about the role of special prosecutors in creating crimes, or creating opportunities for crimes to be committed.”

“In the end, I don’t think Mueller’s going to come up with very much, in terms of criminal conduct, that existed before he was appointed, and that’s pretty shocking,” added Dershowitz. I think his conduct is actually worse.  He is using process crimes in order to extort testimony against others where there is also a lack of evidence.

Iran illegally shipping weapons to Yemen and proxies in other areas

Washington Times:
President Trump’s point man on curbing Iranian aggression offered fresh evidence Thursday that Tehran is violating a United Nations ban on weapons exports by sending rockets and other military equipment to proxies around the Middle East, and warned that the U.S. is prepared to use force to curtail such activity.

Standing before a dramatic backdrop of Iranian weaponry that the U.S. says was captured from Tehran-backed militants in Yemen, Bahrain and Afghanistan, Brian Hook, State Department special representative for Iran, said the Islamic republic has been shaping events across the region for nearly four decades through “illegal weapons transfers, proxies and terror — a deadly trifecta.”

Among the equipment on display were anti-tank weapons, unmanned aircraft, small arms and other advanced weaponry captured across the region. The U.S. accuses Iran of arming proxies that include Yemen’s Houthi rebels, militants in Bahrain and Afghanistan’s Taliban.

Mr. Hook said the T…

Fracking is better for the environment than biofuels

Washington Examiner:
In 2007, at the urging of President George W. Bush, Democrats and Republicans together created a massive new mandate for the production and sale of biofuels. It was environmental folly.

The public is familiar with that part of the renewable fuel mandate about ethanol, the politically favored, wasteful, and environmentally destructive product that is blended into gasoline thanks to federal law. But the biodiesel side of this business is less well-known.

It has, though, produced an environmental catastrophe in East Asia, the defilement of tens of millions of acres of rainforest, and increased net carbon emissions, the New York Times reported this week.

The 2007 measure stimulated worldwide manufacture of vegetable oils for biodiesel because it created huge new and artificial demand for soy oil and then palm oil, which is even cheaper. These crops required farmland in suitable climates, which meant tens of millions of acres of jungle in Malaysia and Indonesia were dest…

Mueller's Cohen case omits allegations of alleged Prague meeting that was key part of collusion case

Byron York:
When news broke that Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about his 2016 meetings concerning the failed Trump Tower Moscow project, the chattering class instantly began talking about the failed Trump Tower Moscow project.

Of course that was news. But it turns out the Cohen plea agreement also made news in what it did not cover. Specifically, it spoke volumes — without saying a word — about a key allegation of the Trump dossier, the charge that Cohen traveled to Prague to arrange secret payments to Russian hackers attacking the Clinton campaign. The accusation is the heart of the collusion allegation, and Trump-Russia special counsel Robert Mueller's deal with Cohen strongly suggests that prosecutors have not found evidence to support it.
...
A quick reminder of what the Prague tale was: In the dossier, former British spy Christopher Steele cited a "Kremlin insider" who reported that Cohen traveled to Prague in August 2016 for talks with Russians …

Mexico buying more US natural gas

Fuel Fix:
U.S. natural gas exports to Mexico hit a new record amid sagging production south of the border.

Mexico imported about 6 billion cubic feet of natural per day from the United States in August, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported late Thursday afternoon.

Some 5.1 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day was delivered via cross-border pipelines while another 860 million was delivered using liquefied natural gas import terminals, EIA data shows.

The record figures come at a time when natural gas production in Mexico continues to fall and demand from new power plants and factories is growing.

Mexico's dry natural gas production was 2.4 billion cubic feet per day in October, according to Mexico's state-owned oil company Petróleos Mexicanos, or Pemex. The figure marks a 7 percent decline from Oct. 2017 and a 21 percent drop from Oct. 2016.

EIA attributed Mexico's sagging natural gas production to declining reserves, a low commodity prices and limited e…

Storing pagan remains is a business in UK?

Telegraph:
Owner of UK's first pagan burial ground in 5,000 years told he must pay business rates as a 'storage unit' I guess throwing their remains on a funeral pyre is a little too pagan.

Poll shows strong support for Trump's policy against illegal immigration

Scott Rasmussen:
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When President Donald Trump was asked to defend the use of tear gas, he said: "Here's the bottom line: Nobody's coming into our country unless they're coming legally." In other words, the president treated it like an issue of law and order. And, on that point, the president has solid backing in the court of public opinion. Eight out of 10 voters nationwide believe that illegal immigration is bad for America.

Despite all those troubling images, a poll conducted by ScottRasmussen.com and HarrisX two days after the incident found that just 25 percent of voters believe Border Patrol's actions are too harsh on illegal immigrants. A plurality (43 percent) believe that Border Patrol is too lenient.

The poll also found that Mexico's offer of asylum should be enough for migrants who are truly trying to escape from persecution. Since they have already been provided with a safe haven, just 38 percent of voters think the migrants should still be …

The Mueller team has become a disgrace to the pursuit of justice

Mark Penn:
Either Robert Mueller has the case of the century, tons of incriminating email and is now close to unveiling the collusion with the Russians that has been so widely repeated, or the investigation has come up empty-handed and he is now trying to bludgeon some peripheral figures into plea deals to give the appearance of collusion. It sure has created a lot of public confusion.

While we have to leave the door open to the first theory, recent actions of the special counsel sure look like a last-minute overreach to draw in fringe characters who did little more than make inquiries or tried to seem in the know about the purloined Clinton campaign emails.

To add to these mixed messages, a bombshell came out in the Guardian, that former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort allegedly met repeatedly in person with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Such activity would definitely have changed the whole complexion of the case. But with both Assange and Manafort’s denials and a full den…

Trump is unleashing the huge potential of US energy while leftist try to kill jobs with nonsensical opposition to pipelines

Monica Crowley:
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The remarkable economic expansion is a direct result of the Trump tax cuts, widespread deregulation and renegotiation of global trade relationships. But the largely untold part of the economic success story is the Trump administration’s unleashing of the energy sector.

For eight long years, President Obama used the Environmental Protection Agency as a sledgehammer to enforce the leftist energy wish list: Bankrupt the coal industry, subsidize green energy boondoggles such as Solyndra despite massive taxpayer losses, impose cap and trade, halt offshore drilling and exploration projects and kill off oil pipelines such as the Keystone XL. American consumers, domestic energy producers and tens of thousands of jobs be damned.

Once in office, Mr. Trump set about reversing these destructive energy policies with the stated goal of achieving true energy independence.

Mr. Trump understood that energy policy may not be as sexy as tax relief or a new NAFTA agreement, but it is …

Dropping Civic classes was a mistake

NY Times:
Are Civics Lessons a Constitutional Right? These Students Are Suing for Them Many see the lack of civics in schools as a national crisis. A federal lawsuit says it also violates the law. That is not an area of the law I am familiar with, but I support the students being taught civics.  It is an important course for teaching people to be responsible citizens.

Supreme Court says government can't designate an area as a critical habitat if the critters aren't there to begin with

Rick Moran:
The Supreme Court ruled in favor of a landowner who challenged the government's designation of 1,500 acres of land as "critical habitat" for an endangered frog species.

Edward Poitevent sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, who said the land in question – in his family's possession for decades – was critical to the survival of the dusky gopher frog, even though the species had not inhabited the land since 1965.
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One small problem with Fish and Wildlife's decision: The land where the frog hadn't lived in more than 45 years had changed.

The government conceded drastic alteration to the land would be needed in order for the gopher frog to survive, including replacing thousands of trees and conducting controlled burns to kill off underbrush.

The government also said designating Poitevent's land as critical habitat could cost his family as much as $34 million, which doesn't include the cost to alter the landscape.

Poitevent and others su…

Today's left echos the argument of the slave states on the founding documents

Steven Hayward:
... the popular leftist attack today on the American Founding and especially on the Declaration of Independence is ironically the exact same argument the southern defenders of slavery made in the 1850s. Stephen Douglas explicitly argued that Jefferson only meant white English men in his phrase “all men are created equal,” while other slave apologists called the Declaration a “self-evident lie.” But as most liberals today are historically ignorant, they are unaware of their affinity for the slaveholders’ position. (Or, you could say that the Democratic Party really hasn’t changed much since the 1850s. . .)
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... Harvard’s Jill Lepore, who writes frequently inThe New Yorkerand elsewhere, and who has a large new book about American history just out titledThese Truths. In arecent interviewwith theChronicle of Higher Education(in which among other things she dissed Howard Zinn),  Lepore throws in with this:

The whole Lincoln-Douglas debate in 1858 comes down to Douglas say…

The deep state used 'circular sourcing' to push the Russian collusion hoax

David Bossie and Corey Lewandowski:
When the Mueller report is finally released—if it ever is released—the Fake News will crawl over it like ants at a picnic. But the one angle they won’t write about is how the deep state played them like a fiddle.

The trick is called “circular sourcing,” and the FBI, under the leadership of people like James Comey, Andy McCabe, and Peter Strzok, brought it to an artform.

The scheme works like this: the deep state leaks stories to the media, then takes action—applies for warrants, initiates investigations, and perhaps partisan impeachment efforts--based on the planted stories as if they’d come out of thin air. Most times, the “evidence” and sourcing in the stories are so thin you can see right through them. And yet, the scheme worked time and again.

For example, the largest investigation against a sitting president in our nation’s history would begin because of a dishonest media leak—one committed by James Comey himself. As we write in our new book, “…

Manafort passports don't support allegations in Guardian story saying he met with Assange in London

Rowan Scarborough:
Paul Manafort’s passports don’t show he entered London in all the years claimed by Guardian newspaper when it said he met secretly with WikiLeaks Julian Assange.

The Guardian said he met with Mr. Assange in London in 2013, 2015 and 2016.

A review of Manafort’s two passports shows he entered Heathrow Airport since 2008 on two occasions, in 2012 and on another time where the customs stamp year is blurred. It appears to be either 2010 or 2016.

Prosecutors entered two of the three passports into evidence.

Manafort says he has never met Mr. Assange.

The liberal Guardian newspaper on Tuesday claimed that Manafort in the spring of 2016 met with Mr. Assange, the WikiLeaks chief, in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. The story cited “sources.”

WikiLeaks, which released streams of emails from the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman John Podesta, immediately denounced the story as a hoax and said it planned to raise money to file a libel suit. Manafort, who…

Honduran MS-13 member in caravan arrested after reentering US

Daily Mail:

Jose Villalobos-Jobel was arrested on Saturday by U.S. Border Patrol agents in California after he admitted being an active member of the MS-13. The Honduran was deported in 2006 from Las Vegas. I guess Jim Acosta was unaware of Villalobos-Jobel when he was trying to debate the President about the makeup of the "invaders."  Mexico has arrested other members of he caravan.

Democrats tried to make the Mississippi election about race and it did not work

Washington Post:
Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith wins racially charged election over Democrat Mike Espy

Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, who was appointed to her seat in April, is the first woman in Mississippi to be elected to the U.S. Senate, the Associated Press projected. Her win preserves Republicans’ 53-47 Senate majority. This is the same race card the Democrats tried against DeSantis in Florida where they twist words out of context to charge racism.  It is a pretty disgusting habit, but they will keep trying it as long as they think it will work to fool black voters into voting for Democrats.  Hyde-Smith was suggesting no racist programs, so Democrats tried to twist her high school education into an issue.  Are we going to see this nonsense everytime the Democrats nominate a black candidate?  Were Democrats in Michigan racist for voting against John James for the Senate?

Brits and Aussies trying to hide their parts in the spying operation against candidate Trump's campaign

George Neumyer:
"FISA declassification will assure all the actors who tried to harm America are finally exposed,” George Papadopoulos wrote on Twitter last week. “Alexander Downer, the Australian government, UK, and GCHQ (British intelligence). If FISA is not declassified, these foreign governments will try to interfere again in 2020 to hurt Trump and the movement.”

Meanwhile, the British spies who tripped up Papadopoulos, Carter Page, Michael Flynn, and others are demanding that Trump stop the release of any Obamagate docs. “UK spy chiefs in fight to stop Trump exposing their sources,” ran the headline on a Sydney Morning Herald story last week.

“MI6 chiefs are secretly battling Donald Trump to stop him publishing classified information linked to the Russian election meddling investigation,” according to the story. “The UK is warning he will undermine intelligence gathering if he releases pages of an FBI application to wiretap one of his former campaign advisers.”

“British spy chie…

Corsi says Mueller accused him of lying after he could not give him what he wanted

Fox News:
Conservative author Jerome Corsi told Fox News' "Tucker Carlson Tonight" on Tuesday that special counsel Robert Mueller's investigators accused him of lying under oath only after "I couldn't give them what they wanted."

Corsi insisted he did not knowingly give prosecutors false information. He said he forgot about the emails in question during his first interview with Mueller's team, noting they were among 60,000 contained on the laptop he provided to the special counsel's office.

Corsi spoke to Fox News one day after he announced he would reject a deal with investigators that would have required him to plead guilty to perjury. A draft court filing prepared as part of the abortive plea deal, which Corsi has provided to multiple media outlets, said Corsi notified Trump adviser Roger Stone in August 2016 that WikiLeaks intended to release information damaging to Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign.

"Word is friend in embassy…

Obama attempts to take credit for oil boom despite his efforts to stymie it

Washington Times:
President Barack Obama took credit once again Tuesday for the U.S. oil-and-gas boom, even though critics have argued that the upswing in oil and natural gas production occurred in spite of his policies.

Mr. Obama told the audience at a gala for Rice University’s Baker Institute that he was “extraordinarily proud of the Paris accords” before saying “I know we’re in oil country and we need American energy.”

“You wouldn’t always know it, but it went up every year I was president,” he said to applause. “That whole, suddenly America’s like the biggest oil producer and the biggest gas — that was me, people.”
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The American Petroleum Institute said in 2013 that “we’re producing more oil and natural gas despite current federal policy, not as a result of it,” noting that production on federal lands plummeted during his tenure while increasing on private lands.

Mr. Obama also promoted policies designed to curb fossil-fuel usage and production, including the Clean Power Plan;…

The media was embarrassingly wrong about the 'caravan' of migrants

NewsBusters:
For the past month, talking heads on CNN and MSNBC have repeated numerous outright falsehoods about the Central American caravan: namely, that it is comprised of “mostly women and children”; that there is “no evidence” of criminals participating; and that none of those marching north are “economic migrants.” An MRC analysis of cable news coverage also identified eight instances in which panelists brazenly claimed that the existence of the caravan was itself a conspiracy theory.

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For all their adamance, these cable news personalities have repeatedly failed to acknowledge statements from Mexican officials and DHS reports about the makeup of the Central American caravan: Mexican Interior Minister Navarrete Prida in an October 30 interview on Radio Enfoque (Focus) 100.1 FM substantiated DHS’s assertion of gang members in the caravan: “I have videos from Guatemala that show men dressed in identical clothing, sporting the same haircuts, handing out money to women to persuade …

Democrats still trying to sell outlandish projections of certain doom on global warming

Image
The Daily Signal:
It’s been repeated throughout the media that global warming could wipe out one-tenth of the U.S. economy by 2100. Now it’s a top-line finding of a major government climate report, but based on a study funded by groups affiliated with two major Democratic donors.

The oft-repeated claim also stemmed from a global warming projection that’s come under increased scrutiny from experts, including one who called it “outlandish.”
The federal government released the second volume of the National Climate Assessment, or NCA, on Friday. The federal report issued dire warnings, including from “ice sheet disintegration on accelerated sea level rise, leading to widespread effects on coastal development lasting thousands of years.”

The report also claims that “global greenhouse gas emissions is expected to cause substantial net damage to the U.S. economy throughout this century,” including a 10 percent hit to the nation’s gross domestic product in one extreme scenario.

However, NCA’s…

Media that supported Beto O'Rourke shocked that he is a leftist

Silvio Canto:
As you may remember, The Dallas Morning News endorsed Representative O'Rourke on the grounds that we need a change of tone in Washington. In other words, Beto would bring us together!

What has Beto done to bring anyone together? The answer is nothing, as I wrote here. How can a man who voted for partial-birth abortion, to abolish ICE, and for socialized medicine bring anyone together? It sounds to me as though Beto was a party-line representative who never stood up to his leadership.

On Monday, The Dallas Morning News is a bit shocked that its Beto is moving left:

So we were surprised and more than a little perplexed to see that O'Rourke's first big public action following the midterm elections was to weld himself to one of the leading progressives of his party.

This week, he joined with Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren in signing a letter aimed for the desk of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis over the issue of troops on the border. ... O'Rourke, like …

The left's prophesies of mass deaths are greatly exaggerated

Peter Heck:
...

... in order to make her case for a big-government “Green New Deal” to address global warming, newly elected Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez went to the liberal well of mass extinction:

“People are going to die if we don’t start addressing climate change ASAP. It’s not enough to think it’s ‘important.’ We must make it urgent.”

First of all, could she have picked a more incredible (as in, “not credible”) issue to prophecy doom about than global warming? These “the earth is incinerating” proclamations have been made consistently for two decades now. Al Gore has flown off into the sunset on his private jets, loaded with his piles of cash, accumulated by scaring people penniless with dire predictions of global cataclysm that have all proven stunningly false. It’s been the greatest scam on Earth for years.

But secondly, and more to the point, how much credibility can the claim of, “people will die if we don’t” have these days? In just the last two years liberal hysterics…

Trump considers canceling Putin meeting over attacks on Ukraine ships

BBC:
US President Donald Trump says he may cancel a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin following a maritime clash between Russia and Ukraine.

Mr Trump told the Washington Post he was waiting for a "full report" after Russian ships fired on and seized three Ukrainian boats on Sunday.

Ukraine described it as an "act of aggression" but Russia said the ships had illegally entered its waters.

Martial law has been imposed in parts of Ukraine, in an unprecedented move.

Meanwhile, the US has urged European states to do more to support Ukraine.

State department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said Washington wanted to see tougher enforcement of sanctions against Russia.

Mr Trump and Mr Putin are due to meet on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Buenos Aires later this week.

However, Mr Trump told the Washington Post that the report coming from his national security team would be "very determinative".

"Maybe I won't have the meeting [with Mr Putin]. M…

This guy appears to be an 'Obama judge'

Fox News:
Judge Who Blocked Trump Sanctuary City Order Bundled $200K for Obama Chief Justice Roberts should look into this.

Left-wing law professor working for ABA is hostile to conservative judicial nominees in review process

Washington Times:
She’s not a senator, but Cynthia Nance plays an enormous role in shaping the debate over some of President Trump’s judicial picks.

Ms. Nance, former dean of the University of Arkansas School of Law, handles the American Bar Association’s judicial ratings for nominees to federal courts in North and South Dakota, Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri and Arkansas, which make up the federal 8th Circuit.

The ABA’s role is one the more opaque parts of the process, but Republicans are pushing it into the light, accusing her of allowing personal bias, particularly a fealty to abortion rights, to color her ratings.

The ABA recently rated Jonathan Kobes, a Trump pick to sit on the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals, “not qualified,” saying he didn’t have a long enough record of legal writings.

And a year earlier, Ms. Nance led the ABA review committee that rated another Trump pick, Leonard Steven Grasz, “not qualified.” Judge Grasz would win confirmation, but not before accusing the …

GOP win of Mississippi Senate seat will make it easier to confirm conservative judges

Washington Examiner:
Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith's victory in the Mississippi run-off election on Tuesday night will provide Republicans with 53 Senate seats, in effect giving Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., three votes to spare when it comes to confirming President Trump's judges.

With Democrats now in control of the House of Representatives, Trump won't be able to pass any sort of major legislation, meaning that the Republican Senate will be primarily spending the next two years pushing through as many judicial nominations as possible.

In the past year, with Republicans down to 51 seats, McConnell has only been able to afford one defection on confirmations. That in effect has left fence-sitting Sens. Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, and Jeff Flake with out-sized influence over the nomination process as any two of them had the power to sink a nomination.

Going into 2019, Flake will be out of the Senate, and McConnell will be able to afford to lose both Collins and …

Venezuela could lose more US assets after arbitration award to gold mining firm whose assets were taken by the Chavez government

Fuel Fix:
A payment on a $1.4 billion arbitration award to a Canadian gold mining company is allowing Venezuela to keep ownership of Citgo Petroleum’s three U.S. refineries — at least through January.

The Venezuelan government recently paid Toronto-based Crystallex International Corp. $425 million as part of a settlement to resolve a legal dispute over gold mines seized by the South American nation’s late President Hugo Chavez in November 2008. Under the terms of the agreement, Venezuela has until 2021 to pay the nearly $1 billion balance, but Jan. 10 looms as a critical deadline for the Venezuela government to issue Crystallex a promissory note, post collateral and set up installment dates.

In a statement, Crystallex CEO Bob Fung said the company is prepared to take additional legal action to seize Citgo shares if Venezuela does not comply. “If that process moves forward, the shares would be sold at auction under the auspices of the U.S. Marshals Service in order to satisfy the remai…

Why should we believe Mueller when he says Manafort is lying?

David Oscar Marcus:
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... One such issue is demonstrated in the Paul Manafort case, where the prosecution team just filed a status report with the court explaining that they have concluded that Manafort is not fulfilling his end of the plea agreement because, they say, he has lied to them during interviews (or as they are called in the system, debriefings). Manafort has said he has answered all of their questions truthfully. This may or may not be true.

But who decides? Strangely, the Mueller team is the decisionmaker in whether Manafort is telling the truth. In the Manafort plea, just as with all other cooperation deals in the federal system, the government gets to decide unilaterally whether to ask for a sentencing reduction based in part on whether they believe Manafort is telling the truth. Manafort cannot himself file a sentencing reduction motion under the sentencing guidelines, and neither can the judge. The government and only the government is charged with evaluating whethe…

Trump threatens electric vehicle subsidies because of GM closures

Washington Times:
The White House is threatening to curtail federal subsidies for electric cars in response to General Motors‘ decision to shut down auto production at plants in Ohio and Michigan.

President Trump said Tuesday his administration is now “looking at cutting all” federal subsidies for GM, including for electric cars. He said he was “very disappointed” with CEO Mary Barra’s decision to close factories in the U.S.

“Nothing being closed in Mexico & China,” Mr. Trump tweeted. “The U.S. saved General Motors, and this is the THANKS we get! General Motors made a big China bet years ago when they built plants there (and in Mexico) - don’t think that bet is going to pay off. I am here to protect America’s Workers!”

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said the administration is “going to be looking at certain subsidies for electric cars,” a day after he met with Ms. Barra. He would not elaborate.

GM said Monday it is closing the plants, in part, due to low demand for cert…