fnc/politics

Former interim Democratic National Committee chairwoman Donna Brazile, a Fox News contributor, said she thinks former Vice President Joe Biden  “is a proven leader,” and has what it takes to “go the distance” in the 2020 presidential race.

Brazile made her comments on “America’s Newsroom” Wednesday, the day before Biden is expected to declare his candidacy for president.

The announcement would end months of speculation as the 76-year-old Biden mulled making what would be a third White House bid. Despite the recent #MeToo controversy complicating his would-be campaign, the former vice president has remained at the top of most public opinion polls.

BIDEN CAMPAIGN LAUNCH PUSHED TO THURSDAY

Biden’s potential political campaign hit a bump recently after several women complained publicly about the prospective 2020 Democratic candidate, accusing him of touching them inappropriately at events.

“With 20 candidates I’m not sure that it’s time to pick number one. But he is number one in the polls. That’s because, of course, he was vice president for eight years. He’s been a public servant. He is a proven leader,” said Brazile.

She added, “The race to the White House is about delegates and the question is, will he have enough, what I like to say, enough miles to go the distance? I do believe he will go the distance and that’s because voters know him, they appreciate his leadership. But what’s his vision? That’s what this generation of Democrats will be asking him. Where do you want to take us?”

‘THE VIEW’ CO-HOST JOY BEHAR BLASTS TRUMP OVER MUELLER REPORT OMISSION: ‘THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN THE NAIL IN THE COFFIN’

Brazile also weighed in on congressional Democrats pushing to keep investigating President Trump despite Special Counsel Robert Mueller wrapping up his Russia investigation with no new indictments.

When asked if it is a good strategy for Democrats to continue to push, Brazile answered, “Absolutely,” adding, “No one is above the law. In fact, Democrats will be running on protecting our democracy.”

She added, “Democrats can walk and chew gum at the same time. You have Democrats out there talking about everything from jobs and the economy and infrastructure, they’re running for president, they’re running to replace Donald Trump in 2020. But you have Capitol Hill Democrats. That’s part of their responsibility in our system of government. So yes, we could do both.”

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“No one is above the law. I think the president should comply with the request from the United States House of Representatives,” said Brazile.

She added, “This is important for the health of our democracy and the future of the United States of America. This is not partisan.”

Source: Fox News Politics

Michael Cohen, former attorney for President Donald Trump, apparently reneged on his admissions for some of his alleged crimes, indicating that he only pleaded guilty to avoid dragging his wife through a prolonged legal battle.

The revelations came from a recorded March 25 phone call he had with actor and Cohen’s close friend Tom Arnold, the audio of which The Wall Street Journal obtained and published Wednesday. Although Cohen reportedly stood by his plea on campaign finance violations, which implicated the president over his alleged affair with porn star Stormy Daniels, he appeared to reverse admissions related to tax evasion and a charge related to a home equity line of credit (HELOC).

“There is no tax evasion,” Cohen said. “And the HELOC? I have an 18 percent loan-to-value on my home. How could there be a HELOC issue?” Cohen portrayed himself as a victim — noting how he lost his insurance, business, and law license — and lamented the lack of support he received after coming forward to law enforcement.

“I shouldn’t be alone anymore. I mean, after over a hundred hours of testimony, right, including seven-and-a-half hours of being beaten up on national television,” he said.

MICHAEL COHEN ASKS HOUSE DEMOCRATS TO HELP KEEP HIM OUT OF PRISON

He also described his dedication to his wife, Laura Shusterman, and his intent to help her avoid legal trouble. “I love this woman. I am not going to let her get dragged into the mud of this crap,” he said before noting he wasn’t expecting the three-year sentence he received.

Cohen’s name made its way back into the news in April when Special Counsel Robert Mueller released his report on the Russia investigation. Mueller’s report made 14 criminal referrals, which included Cohen, who admitted to paying Daniels hush money just before the 2016 presidential election.

While Trump has denied wrongdoing related to that payment and another to Karen McDougal, Cohen stood by his guilty plea. “They had me on campaign finance,” he said in the call with Arnold.

During his call, Cohen appeared to describe the conflict he faced in turning on the president, whom he had served for a decade. “I needed to get the truth out there, and (it’s) very hard when you spend 10 years taking care of somebody and their family,” Cohen told Arnold.

MICHAEL COHEN LAWYER ATTEMPTS TO CLARIFY TESTIMONY ABOUT PRESIDENTIAL PARDON, AMID CRITICISM

“And look, I always knew, you know, who he was and what he was and so on, but it didn’t really matter because it’s — he’s a small microcosm of New York real estate. It’s very different when you start looking to seeing what’s happening now in the country,” he said.

Former mayor Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s new attorney, labeled Cohen’s walkback “poetic justice.”

“Since Cohen began composing for the Angry Democrats he has demonstrably lied under oath in his guilty plea and his testimony to Elijah ‘I’ll throw the book at you’ Cummings,” Giuliani said in another tweet. “Report ignores all of this and provides no facts to evaluate Cohen’s credibility. One of many deceptions,” he said in an apparent dig at the Journal.

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Cohen’s attorney, Lanny Davis, told Fox News: “Nothing said by Mr. Cohen to Tom Arnold contradicts Mr. Cohen’s previous defense attorney, Guy Petrillo, in his sentencing memorandum to the presiding federal U.S. District Court Judge William H. Pauley III back in December. I would also add the important words used by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, and others, in describing Michael Cohen’s cooperation and testimony as ‘credible’ addressing the ‘core’ issues involved in his investigation.”

The White House did not respond for a request for comment.

Fox News’ Tamara Gitt contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

President Trump on Wednesday touted his administration’s success in combating the opioid epidemic in the United States, while acknowledging that there is still more work to do.

Speaking at the Rx Drug Abuse and Heroin Summit in Atlanta, the president’s remarks noted the steps his administration has taken to battle the epidemic, but also veered into his frequent critique of drugs coming over the U.S.’s southern border into the country.

“We will not solve this epidemic overnight,” Trump said to an audience of elected leaders and health and law enforcement officials gathered in the Georgia capital. “But we will never stop until the job is done.”

Trump added: “We will succeed and we’re making tremendous progress.”

NEW YORK SUES MAKERS OF OXYCONTIN DAYS AFTER COMPANY AGREES TO $270M SETTLEMENT

The president has declared opioids a national health emergency, while First Lady Melania Trump, who also spoke at the conference, focuses on the issue in her national “Be Best” child welfare campaign.

“I’m proud of this administration’s historic progress,” the first lady said before introducing her husband.

Opioid abuse claimed a record nearly 48,000 American lives in 2017. An estimated 2 million people are addicted to the drugs, which include both legal prescription pain medications and illegal drugs like heroin.

There have been signs of progress.The number of prescriptions for opioid painkillers filled in the U.S. fell substantially in 2017. Still, it’s unclear whether the opioid problem is on the decline.

Kellyanne Conway, one of Trump’s top advisers, said at a White House gaggle Wednesday that Twitter and Google have helped the administration combat the opioid and drug crisis. So far, the administration has helped collect 3.7 million pounds of unused and expired medications — enough to fill seven Air Force One planes, she said.

The next “National Prescription Drug Take Back Day” is Saturday.

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Conway said she met Tuesday with drug enforcement and officials from Google, which is helping the administration by displaying links to about 5,500 locations where people can drop off unused and expired pills.

Trump also hit Mexico for allowing heroin and other opioids to come into the country, and promised that his much-touted border wall will help stem the flow of drugs into the U.S.

“Heroin alone kills 300 Americans, 90 percent of which enter the Southern Border,” Trump said.

While it’s true that the vast majority of heroin in the U.S. comes from Mexico, virtually all of it makes its way into the country through legal ports of entry and not by traffickers sneaking it across the border unnoticed.

“A small percentage of all heroin seized by CBP along the land border was between Ports of Entry (POEs),” the Drug Enforcement Administration said in a 2018 report.

There is also contention over Trump’s claims of progress in combating the opioid epidemic.

Keith Humphreys, a drug policy adviser in the George W. Bush and Barack Obama administrations who now is at Stanford University, said some states are making progress in combating opioids abuse, but not because of Trump’s actions. Humphreys cited Rhode Island and Vermont as examples. He also said some states have regressed.

Humphreys said the president’s declaration of opioids addiction as a public health emergency in 2017 failed to translate into significant concrete action. Members of Congress, he said, “figured out they were going to have to do it themselves and they did.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Dan Caldwell, the executive director of Concerned Veterans for America, said on “America’s Newsroom” Wednesday that while many Americans get quality health care from the Department of Veterans Affairs system, those who served in the military and wish to join private networks should have that choice.

He said that New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez “is really off base” with her contention at a Town Hall last week that the veterans health care system is efficient and “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

“In many cases, yes, the V.A. is performing well, it is giving veterans high-quality care, but in other cases they aren’t,” Caldwell said. “Just because some veterans are getting good care isn’t an excuse not to fix the V.A. for the veterans who aren’t getting good care. And that’s why we support giving veterans a choice, so if a veteran wants to access care in the community because he or she feels they aren’t getting good care in the V.A., they can do that. And that’s what President Trump supports — not privatizing the V.A., not dismantling the V.A.”

The V.A. Mission Act, which Congress passed in June and President Trump signed into law, allows veterans the option of using their benefits at a network of private health care providers.

OCASIO-CORTEZ DECLARES VA ‘ISN’T BROKEN,’ ALREADY PROVIDES TOP-NOTCH CARE 

“Through legislation like the V.A. Mission Act, they’re trying to put the veteran at the center of the V.A., not the bureaucracy,” Caldwell said. “Giving veterans a choice will force the private sector and the V.A. to compete for veterans, this will give veterans the power to choose.”

The department was plagued by scandal during the Obama administration — including secret wait lists, systemic neglect and veterans dying while waiting to see a doctor.

Caldwell credited Trump, Congress and V.A. Secretary Robert Wilkie for getting the measure passed. Wilkie is the fourth secretary to lead the VA in the past four years, while the VA’s $200 billion budget has doubled in the past decade.

“If implemented properly, it will fix a lot of the long-term systemic problems in the V.A.,” he said, adding “You’re seeing more people like Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez inside and outside trying to stop the implementation of the bill and keep veterans trapped in many cases in failing V.A. hospitals. And that’s not just wrong, that’s immoral.”

President Trump on Wednesday took aim at Ocasio-Cortez’s V.A. remarks, tweeting: “Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is correct, the VA is not broken, it is doing great. But that is only because of the Trump Administration. We got Veterans Choice & Accountability passed.”

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Ocasio-Cortez said at the Town Hall: “They are trying to fix it. But who are they trying to fix it for, is the question we’ve got to ask. And this is who they’re trying to fix it for. They’re trying to fix the V.A. for insurance companies. They’re trying to fix it for insurance corporations, and ultimately they’re trying to fix the V.A. for the for-profit health care industry that does not put people or veterans first.”

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

Source: Fox News Politics

The nation’s largest and oldest Native American lobby is facing a major shakeup in the wake of a #MeToo scandal, with Fox News confirming that its embattled leader – who formally resigned in February amid criticism of her handling of that case – is set to leave the organization in early May.

Jacqueline Pata, the executive director of the National Congress of American Indians for 18 years, initially said she would stay on until the organization has hired a successor. The organization that advocates in Washington for treaty-recognized tribal governments across the United States said it hopes to have a CEO in place before the national mid-year conference on June 24-27 in Reno, Nevada.

BILL CLINTON DIGS IN OVER MONICA IN AWKWARD #METOO INTERVIEW

But in a statement to Fox News, the organization put a tighter timeframe on her departure saying Pata “will continue supporting the organization’s efforts and preparing for the transition to a new CEO until the end of her tenure in early May.”

She’ll land another job. Pata’s parachute is becoming president and CEO of the Tlingit-Haida Regional Housing Authority based in Juneau, Alaska, where she’ll be in charge of handling potentially millions in federal housing grants. The group called her a “recognized and well-respected leader across Alaska and throughout Indian Country” in an April 12 statement.

Pata, a member of the Tlingit and Haida Tribes in Alaska, is a former deputy assistant secretary for Housing and Urban Development during the Clinton administration — and has been a leading voice in calls for the Washington Redskins to change its name.

But her looming NCAI exit comes after many member tribes cast no-confidence votes in Pata’s leadership last year – and follows the departure of other NCAI officials including the chief financial officer, the director of operations and deputy director. Numerous women departed the organization, according to Indianz.com, a Native American news site that has extensively covered the organization’s turmoil.

The biggest controversy stemmed from allegations against John Dossett, the former general counsel for the organization. He strongly denied accusations of sexual harassment of a female NCAI employee during a 2016 NCAI conference in Spokane, Washington. But NCAI dismissed Dossett last October — and temporarily suspended Pata over questions about her handling of the claims.

Pata reportedly was informed about the allegations against Dossett within two weeks after the incident allegedly happened but didn’t take action, according to the High Country News, a magazine that covers the American West. After the allegations became public, Pata reportedly said the accuser had a substance abuse problem, the High Country News reported.

Noting that 33 employees left the organization over a three-year period, Director of Operations Nicole Hallingstad wrote in her August 2018 resignation letter that Pata was an “autocratic executive.”

CLINTON ‘EXACTLY WRONG’ ON TRUMP INDICTMENT CLAIMS

“Committed staff does not lightly leave an organization they love and a mission they are passionate about fulfilling,” Hallingstad wrote. “But when they see colleagues marginalized, disciplined, punished, and even terminated for trying to address issues of poor management – or bad actors not held to account for disrespectful behavior – and the oppressive culture of silence and lack of authentic process means they cannot speak with their voices, then they will speak with their feet.”

Reached by Fox News, Hallingstad declined an interview for this report.

Pata’s suspension amid the controversy came after about 40 tribes cast a “no confidence” vote or called for her ouster.

Pata was back in the job by early 2019 – then initially announced her resignation in February.

“After having time for thought and reflection, I have decided to resign from my role as NCAI executive director. Serving NCAI and tribal nations has been one of the greatest honors of my life,” Pata said at the time. “I am proud of that service and know that I leave NCAI with a strong foundation for continued growth under new leadership.”

NCAI President Jefferson Keel praised Pata’s tenure after her February announcement. “During Jackie’s tenure, NCAI grew substantially as an organization, forged partnerships within Indian Country and among outside allies, and achieved significant successes in our advocacy with Congress, the executive branch, and in the federal courts,” Keel said. “NCAI is appreciative of the leadership Jackie has shown in her stewardship of the organization, and we wish her well in her future endeavors.”

Fast-forward to today, and the organization has set her departure for May.

“The NCAI executive committee is in the process of recruiting NCAI’s first chief executive officer, which will replace the former position of executive director, a testament to the growth of the organization over our 75-year history,” the NCAI said in a statement. “The committee anticipates that the recruitment process will be completed in time for the new CEO to be announced at or prior to the upcoming mid-year convention.”

The NCAI declined to provide a statement from Pata, but a spokesperson said she helped in crafting the organization’s statement to Fox News.

The NCAI told Fox News it is committed to addressing the concerns of members. “In a previous NCAI conference session, on February 12, 2019, President Jefferson Keel reported to our membership that the organization took immediate action in response to harassment allegations made by former NCAI employees,” the statement to Fox News said, adding that Keel announced the completion of an independent review and a separate review of the group’s employment policies.

“In addition, The Washington Media Group conducted an internal culture review that found NCAI is considered a safe place to work,” the statement said.

Pata has been visible in recent years opposing the mascot for the Washington Redskins.

She lambasted a 2016 Washington Post poll that found 90 percent of Native Americans said they were not bothered by the Redskins name. Pata responded that “anyone can create a poll on any issue. The survey doesn’t recognize the psychological impacts these racist names and imagery have on American Indian and Alaska Natives.” Pata also co-wrote op-eds for Time and for The Independent criticizing the team’s name as a racist slur.

Source: Fox News Politics

Counselor to President Trump Kellyanne Conway criticized House Democrats’ latest impeachment push, blasted Hillary Clinton for her recent Trump comments and weighed in on former Vice President Joe Biden’s expected announcement that he’s running for president.

Conway spoke on “America’s Newsroom” Wednesday shortly before President Trump and first lady Melania Trump headed to Atlanta to continue their efforts to combat the nation’s opioid crisis. Both headlined the 2019 Rx Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit on Wednesday.

Responding to congressional Democrats issuing subpoenas for administration officials, Conway said the president made it “very clear that there’s really no reason to comply with all these requests when we have the Mueller investigation.”

TRUMP VOWS TO FIGHT ‘ALL’ SUBPOENAS AGAISNT ADMINISTRATION, CALLS DEMAND FOR MCGAHN TESTIMONY ‘RIDICULOUS’

The subpoenas were issued after a redacted version of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report was released last week, which Democrats argue provides evidence to the contrary of Attorney General William Barr’s summary that the investigation found no evidence that President Trump obstructed justice.

“I believe too many people are invested in this investigation and they had a conclusion in search of evidence and they’re disappointed in Director Mueller, harassing he and his wife after leaving Easter services, who really wanted a different result,” said Conway on Wednesday.

“But that’s not the way our justice system works and that’s not the way prosecutions and investigations work. This was very simply when you prosecute and you investigate you either refer for indictment or you decline to refer for indictment. The rest, frankly, is a little bit gratuitous for some who are still looking and searching for a way to get the president.”

When asked if the president is willing to use executive privilege in this situation Conway answered, “possibly,” adding, “I think the Democrats have a decision to make. Are you going to talk for the rest of 2019 into 2020 about impeachment or infrastructure? About drug pricing or dragging down a president? About healthcare or Donald Trump? Trump, Trump, Trump at all times.”

She added, “They have to be honest with the people of this country whom they also represent as to whether they are serious about having bipartisan action to try to solve the problems of this nation.”

GIULIANI KNOCKS CLINTON’S TRUMP INDICTMENT CLAIMS, SAYS OLD DOJ POLICY OF ‘YOU CANNOT INDICT A CLINTON’ WILL CHANGE

On Tuesday, Hillary Clinton said, “I think there is enough there that any other person who had engaged in those acts would certainly have been indicted,” referring to the Mueller report.

In response, Conway said, “What she said apart from being irrelevant and partisan, is just wrong. That anybody else would have been indicted? The Mueller report, Mueller did not indict the president.”

“There was enormous pressure on the Mueller investigation and investigators to do what she failed to do, which is deny Donald Trump the presidency. And this woman has always blamed everybody but her, the pathetic candidate and poor campaign that she ran and was,” said Conway.

She added, “And she’s got some experience on impeachment because her husband actually was impeached by the House of Representatives. He was impeached because he lied under oath On August 17, 1998 to investigators.”

BIDEN’S 2020 CAMPAIGN LAUNCH PUSHED TO THURSDAY: SOURCES

When asked what President Trump thinks about a potential contest against Joe Biden, Conway answered, “Bring it on, bring them all on.”

Biden is expected to announce his 2020 candidacy on Thursday.

“I think Biden’s timing actually benefits him because the Democrats seem really desperate to find an alternative to Bernie Sanders, who is the clear announced frontrunner right now in the polling and on the ground. Bernie Sanders has a lot in common with Donald Trump, which is he doesn’t really care what his party thinks about his candidacy at this point in the primaries.”

She added, “The only difference between Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump is Bernie Sanders’ ideas are terrible for America and Donald Trump is a much better candidate.”

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Conway said she thinks Biden will be seen as an alternative to Bernie Sanders but added, “he’s got a lot of people in his way.”

“Old, white, male career politicians like Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden is not exactly what the Democratic Party had in mind for 2020 when they’re running all these different folks who are talking about identity politics and what makes them different,” Conway said.

Source: Fox News Politics

President Trump’s sole Republican primary challenger is calling on the commander-in-chief to step down.

“If Donald Trump is an American patriot, he should resign from office,” former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld wrote in an op-ed Wednesday appearing in The Bulwark,  a conservative news and opinion website. Among the site’s founders is conservative commentator Bill Kristol, one of the leaders of the “Never Trump” movement.

TRUMP VOWS TO FIGHT HOUSE DEMOCRATS OVER MUELLER REPORT

Weld – a vocal Trump critic who earlier this month launched a long-shot GOP primary challenge bid to unseat a president very popular within his own party – pointed to the findings in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia Investigation report, claiming that Trump is a “one-man crime wave.”

“Time and again, Trump tried to use the power of the Oval Office to protect himself and his associates from the consequences of their actions. The only defense Trump has to obstruction of justice is that he was too incompetent to carry it off,” Weld argued. “Over the past two years, several Trump aides derailed his criminal conspiracies by distracting the president, or simply ignoring him. Trump’s failure to stop Bob Mueller does not negate how hard he tried.”

Weld spotlighted that the Mueller report “lifted up the rock and left Trump’s minions scurrying for cover. Already, five Trump associates have been convicted of serious crimes, including his former campaign manager, his longtime personal attorney, and his former national security advisor. And we don’t yet know the extent of criminality within the Trump campaign or the Trump White House because he Mueller report includes 12 criminal referrals that have been redacted to protect ongoing cases.”

And Weld claimed that “the American public, our international allies, the very rule of law itself would all be better served with a President Mike Pence.”

WELD ENVISIONS ‘MCCAIN’ STYLE WHITE HOUSE RUN

The president on Wednesday once again declared the probe found “no collusion and they also came up with no obstruction,” adding: “I thought after two years we’d be finished with it, no—now the House goes subpoenaing. They want to know every deal I’ve ever done.”

And he pushed back against attempts by the Democratic majority in the House of Representatives to subpoena current and former White House officials in their probe.

Source: Fox News Politics

Amid the fallout of Robert Mueller’s investigation, Congressman Mark Green, R-Tenn, has called the subsequent investigations by Democrats a “massive leveraging of the legislative branch against the executive branch” which, in his opinion, constitutes a “ridiculous abuse of power.”

In the days since a full, redacted version of the Mueller report was released last Thursday, continued discussions about the possibility of impeachment proceedings have been brought up amongst Democrats as they investigate various elements of the President’s life and attempt to determine whether he actually obstructed justice throughout Mueller’s probe.

“Nearly every single Democrat committee chairman is investigating some aspect of the president,” Rep. Green, a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, said during an appearance on “America’s Newsroom” on Wednesday afternoon.

DEMOCRATS’ EXTREME 2020 POLICIES ON ABORTION, IMMIGRATION ARE PLAYING INTO TRUMP’S REELECTION, ANALYST SAYS

FORMER CLINTON ADVISER, FIERCE CRITIC OF SANDERS NOW PRAISES 2020 CAMPAIGN

“You look at ways and means. They are looking at his taxes. The finance services, they’re looking at Deutsche Bank. Oversight is looking at Mr. Klein. Judiciary is looking at McGahn. Intel is looking at collusion,” he continued.

“This is a ridiculous abuse of power. They’re leveraging the legislative branch against the executive branch,” he said.

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He continued by arguing that despite extensive investigations by leading Democrats, the party has little to show for it. In addition, President Trump wants to reach across party lines to discuss big issues like immigration, but Democrats aren’t interested, Green said.

“We can get this done, and they just want to keep investigating the president,” he said. “For them, it’s 2020 talking points and that’s it.”

Ultimately, Democrats will pay for that at the polls, Green argued.

Source: Fox News Politics

President Trump’s re-election campaign fired back Wednesday at Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders for arguing that convicted Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and other violent criminals should be allowed to vote from prison, calling the idea “deeply offensive.”

“The extremity and radicalism of the 2020 Democrats knows no bounds,” Trump campaign press secretary Kayleigh McEnany told Fox News. “Giving imprisoned terrorists, sex offenders, and murderers the right to vote is an outrageous proposal that is deeply offensive to innocent victims across this country, some of whom lost their lives and are forever disenfranchised by the very killers that 2020 Democrats seek to empower.”

BERNIE SANDERS SAYS BOSTON MARATHON BOMBER, SEXUAL ASSAULTERS SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO VOTE

The statement offered a preview of sorts of the battle to come between Trump’s campaign and the still-evolving Democratic field. Sanders remains a front-runner in that crowded primary race, though former Vice President Joe Biden is expected to jump in the race on Thursday — and polling consistently shows him at or near the top of the field.

Sanders’ statement about voting rights for inmates drew in the Trump campaign after generating controversy all week.

During a CNN town hall on Monday night, a Harvard student asked Sanders if his position on expanding voting rights to felons in prison would support “enfranchising people” like Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev as well as those “convicted of sexual assault,” whose votes could have a “direct impact on women’s rights.”

Sanders first responded by saying he wanted a “vibrant democracy” with “higher voter turnout” and blasted “cowardly Republican governors” who he said were “trying to suppress the vote.”

The Vermont senator then argued that the Constitution says “everybody can vote” and that “some people in jail can vote.”

KAMALA HARRIS BACKTRACKS, NOW SAYS CRIMINALS LIKE BOSTON BOMBER ‘SHOULD BE DEPRIVED’ OF RIGHT TO VOTE

“But, I think the right to vote is inherent to our democracy,” Sanders said. “Yes, even for terrible people.”

Fox News’ Joseph A. Wulfsohn contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics

Congressman Steve King, R-Iowa, came under fire for comparing the treatment he received from recent controversial remarks to Jesus’ suffering.

Rep. King spoke at a town hall in Cherokee, Iowa, Tuesday where he responded to a comment from a pastor who told King she was concerned that “Christianity is really being persecuted, and it’s starting right here in the United States,” the Des Moines Register reported.

“For all that I’ve been through and it seems even strange for me to say it but I’m at a certain peace,” King answered.  “And it’s because of a lot of prayers for me. And when I had to step I have to step down to the floor of the House of Representatives, and look up at those 400-and-some accusers — you know we just passed through Easter and Christ’s passion — and I have better insight into what He went through for us, partly because of that experience.”

The congressman was referring to the scrutiny he came under following his racially charged remarks in a New York Times interview that was published earlier this year.

REP. STEVE KING REMOVED FROM COMMITTEE ASSIGNMENTS AMID ‘WHITE SUPREMACIST’ CONTROVERSY

“White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” King asked the newspaper. “Why did I sit in classes teaching me about the merits of our history and our civilization?”

Not too long after, King was stripped of his committee assignments by his fellow House Republicans.

“We will not tolerate this type of language in the Republican Party … or in the Democratic Party as well,” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said at the time. “I watched what Steve King said and we took action.”

King insisted that his comments had been “completely mischaracterized” and blasted McCarthy for what King called “a political decision that ignores the truth.” He said he would not step down for his position and was planning on running for reelection in 2020.

King’s latest comments were slammed by social media users.

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Jon Cooper, the chairman of the Democratic Coalition Against Trump tweeted, “Steve King says he understands how Jesus Christ felt after months of criticism in the House for King’s comments defending white nationalism. No, I’m not friggin’ kidding you – he really said that!”

“Oh, that is rich,” “Star Trek” star George Takei tweeted.

Comedian Marie Connor tweeted, “Steve King should be charged with victim card fraud.”

Former Congressman Joe Walsh wrote, “Uh…no Steve King. Don’t compare yourself to Jesus Christ. Don’t say you’ve suffered like Jesus Christ suffered. Please don’t do that.”

Fox News’ Matt Richardson and Chad Pergram contributed to this report.

Source: Fox News Politics


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