Are you on Team Senator Mitch McConnell or Team Senator Ted Cruz? – McConnell Senate Fails to Repeal Obamacare Yet Again

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You’ve been had, folks:

A procedural vote Sunday to repeal Obamacare couldn’t win over a majority of the GOP-led Senate, while a bid to revive an obscure exports agency succeeded, delivering twin blows to conservatives as they navigated a thorny path toward a highway bill that’s raised questions about civility and Republican discord in the august chamber.

Allies of Majority Leader Mitch McConnell kicked off a kooky weekend session by scolding Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican, for flouting the Senate’s rules of comity. The 2016 presidential candidate accused Mr. McConnell on Friday of lying about whether he’d struck a deal to revive the federal Export-Import Bank, which faces a slow death after its charter expired June 30.

“We’re not here on some frolic or to pursue personal ambitions,” Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, Utah Republican, said, adding he worries about the future of the institution.

As I wrote just before the last election, the ideal outcome for conservatives would have been a GOP retaking of the Senate and a loss of McConnell’s seat in Kentucky to Alison Lundergan Grimes. As for Orrin Hatch, I stand by what I wrote over at National Review back in 2012:

Most Republican eyes are on the upcoming Wisconsin June recall election and the fates of Scott Walker and Rebecca Kleefisch, but two other races to watch carefully are the primaries of Senators Dick Lugar of Indiana and Orrin Hatch of Utah. Both men were born in the 1930s and have been in the Senate since 1976. If the GOP is to have a future as a conservative party, it’s time for them to go.

Hatch is the worst kind of Republican establishment figure, who feints to his right when he needs to placate the people he “hates” and then, once safely ensconced in the comfy chair for six more years, resumes pursuit of his first love: Senate “comity.”

Besides, who cares about the “future of the institution,” so aptly characterized by P.J. O’Rourke as a Parliament of Whores?  The Senate was changed irrevocably by the passage of the 17th Amendment, one of the disastrous “Progressive-Era” amendments that also gave us Prohibition and the income tax. Now the Senate is controlled by a bunch of time-serving, bum-kissing, arse-protective hacks determined to squelch any views that run afoul of the Permanent Bipartisan Fusion Party.

As many predicted, the procedural vote to repeal Obamacare received only a 49-43 plurality, well shortof the 60-vote supermajority needed to limit debate and advance to an up-down vote. The Ex-Im vote easily surmounted that hurdle, 67 votes to 26, clearing the way for it to be added to the bill later on. Twenty-four Republicans and every Democrat who cast a vote Sunday backed the Export-Import Bank measure, while the Obamacare measure fell short on a party-line vote.

It was the first time the Senate voted on Obamacare repeal in this Congress, although its budgetassumed the law’s repeal. While the GOP holds the majority, eight lawmakers — five of them Republicans — missed the weekend vote.

The next time you’re tempted to vote Republican because the Democrats are even worse, stop and ask yourself this: in what way?

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Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 8.06.45 PM

The former Florida governor held fundraisers in the well-to-do New York beach communities over the weekend.


Behind a garden modeled on Monet’s, Jeb Bush addressed a lawn-full of chief executives and hedge-fund managers at an East Hampton, New York, estate Saturday morning. While the candidate is no stranger to courting wealthy donors, this time was different: about half the attendees were Democrats.

“This guy sells well,” said Kenneth Lipper, the money manager and registered Democrat who hosted the event, after Bush left. Virtually the only one who left without writing a check, Lipper said, was a buck deer that wandered past the group assembled on the wooded grounds.

The wealthiest donors are playing an unprecedented role in the early stages of the 2016 race. For the first time ever, most candidates are raising more money through super-PACs, which can accept donations of up to $1 million or more, than through the traditional campaign accounts that are capped at $2,700 per donor.

No one has raised as much in this new environment as Bush, who had amassed about $103 million in his super-PAC and another $11 million for his campaign by the end of June. The Lipper event shows how widely Bush is ranging in his quest for donors.

The race for money adds to the importance of places like the Hamptons, Wall Street’s oceanside playground, where Lipper remarked that it’s become fashionable to spend more than $100 million on a vacation home. The entire annual income for the median U.S. household—$50,000—wouldn’t cover more than 900 of the summer rentals here listed on one brokerage’s website.

After answering questions for an hour at Lipper’s event, Bush left for two more gatherings at a pair of mansions near the beach.

“People with money like him,” said Andrew Sabin, 69, a top local Republican fundraiser and a co-host of one of the Bush events. “I’m sure there’s a lot of poor people that like him too. It so happens there’s not a lot of poor people in the Hamptons.”

Bush’s schedule took him to the six-bedroom beachside mansion of Clifford Sobel, a former ambassador and entrepreneur, who served crab cakes and bruschetta. Then there were cocktails at the home of Emil Henry, a former Treasury official and now the CEO of an infrastructure fund.

The Bush campaign wouldn’t comment on the events or say how much was raised, but Lipper said his event alone raised about $230,000.

Over a salad on the deck at the South Fork Country Club prior to attending two of the fundraisers, Sabin said donors appreciate the way Bush’s staff keeps in touch.

“We get a rundown every week—they’re very transparent,” said Sabin, who runs a precious-metals refining business with offices from China to Dubai. “Some guys take your money, you don’t know what they’re talking about until you read it in the newspaper.”

During a course of the lunch with his girlfriend, Kathy Qian, Sabin passed out copies of a magazine that features him and his 60-foot fishing boat, Above the Ground; said he gave to 256 charities; and mentioned the climate-change center he created at Columbia Law School (“a big one”). An ardent environmentalist, Sabin said he’s encouraging Bush to become “the Teddy Roosevelt of this century.” He said he’s indifferent to the rise of big money in politics.

“I believe in free enterprise,” Sabin said. “You earned that money, you can do what you want with it. I don’t have a problem with it at all.”

In some ways, the Hamptons are Hillary Clinton territory. The Democratic candidate and her husband have often rented summer homes here, and it’s popular with movie stars and entertainers who tilt liberal. Suffolk County favored Democrats in the last three presidential races.

But Lipper estimated that the crowd of about 70 at his event was almost evenly split between the parties, and virtually every one of them donated to Bush. Lipper, 74, said he introduced Bush as the candidate who will “bring unity and civility to the process.” He was impressed when Bush started his visit by introducing himself to Lipper’s kitchen staff.

Lipper’s career in finance includes creating the Lipper & Co. investment management firm and advising Oliver Stone on the film Wall Street. He was also a key fundraiser for New York City Mayor Ed Koch, and later served in his administration.

Despite the opulent surroundings, the Hamptons hosts couldn’t spend much on food and drink without running up against limits on in-kind campaign contributions, Lipper said. So he limited his expenses to about $2,000. That meant a simple brunch of berries and melon, mini-bagels, and cheese quiche.

“It was kind of spartan, he said, “but it was fine.”

Boehner Cries During GOLF Channel Interview…

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Even golfing can be a tearjerker of a subject for Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), who’s known for frequently dispensing waterworks.

“I wanted to make sure that every kid had the same chance I did — an opportunity,” Boehner, with tears filling his eyes, says in a promotional spot for The Golf Channel show, “Feherty.”

Another clip from the program, which airs Aug. 3., shows Boehner telling host David Feherty about a photo of him and some former colleagues that sits in his office, saying, “The three of us are talking about how easily we turn to tears.”
Boehner — who’s gotten misty-eyed at everything from State of the Union addresses to statue unveilings — said in a 2010 interview that he’s a “pretty emotional guy.”


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In an interview conducted solely in Spanish, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush tells MSNBC he’s “hurt” by GOP frontrunner Donald Trump’s strident criticisms of Mexican criminal aliens coming across the border.

“I was hurt hearing somebody speaking in such a vulgar fashion. This makes solving this problem much more difficult. When we have politicians like that we cannot progress,” said Bush according to a translator. “In a political sense it was bad, and it creates an environment that is worse.”

While Bush has consistently attacked Trump for saying that illegal immigration from Mexico has sparked a massive crime wave, he also acknowledged that voters are, in fact, angry that their country is being invaded by drug runners, human smugglers, rapists,murderers, and drunk drivers.

“People are deeply disaffected. They’re angry. They see the country kind of moving away from its foundational principles. They see the rule of law not being applied,” Bush toldYahoo News earlier in July. “They see here in San Francisco, a sanctuary city, where a person who had been deported five times commits a violent crime—he should have been in prison to begin with—and was released, and this city does not cooperate with ICE. They see this stuff and they’re legitimately angry.”

In 2014, Bush called breaking U.S. law and crossing the border unlawfully was an “act of love.”

Immigration ‘surge’ continues, 30,000 expected, U.N. demands ’empathy’ over ‘enforcement’

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This year’s “surge” of illegal immigrant children and teens is continuing at last year’s historic pace, with about 30,000 expected to reach the United States, according to humanitarian groups.

Different this year: Many more are being stopped in Mexico as they flee Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, cutting the number making the dangerous trek through Mexico to the U.S. border in half.

“The numbers are surging,” said Linda Hartke, president of Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service [LIRS], one of the country’s premier humanitarian-immigration groups that helps with the legal and housing of immigrants, especially children.

An immigrant child in Customs and Border Patrol custody. AP Photo

“We’ve seen no change in the numbers,” added Alaide Vilchis Ibarra of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the U.S. “They just aren’t making it here,” she said.

Urged to take action by President Obama, Mexico has moved to seize the children and families. But instead of evaluating their request for asylum, the humanitarian officials said that Mexico is arresting and eventually deporting them home. While in detention, the conditions are horrible, Ibarra said.

Some 100,000 immigrants were stopped in Mexico last year, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. When calculating for just the 70,000 youths who surged over the border last year and the thousands believed to have died or were taken by gangs while making the trip, that suggests possibly 200,000 youths actually tried to make it into the United States.

Nicole Boehner, protection associate with UNHCR, raising concerns on how immigrant children seeking asylum are handled by U.S. officials, said that protections for Mexican children reaching the U.S. be strengthened.

At a press conference to release an LIRS report titled “At the Crossroads for Unaccompanied Migrant Children,” Boehner also said that the U.N. urges that “the U.S. and other governments ensure that an ethic of care and empathy, as opposed to an enforcement approach, govern all interactions with children and that their best interests are a primary consideration.”

To deal with the ongoing crisis of youths and families fleeing Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, plagued with gang violence, the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service has proposed a sweeping and humanitarian change to how the country deals with unaccompanied migrant children.

Their 59-page report [see below] reviews the current system and proposes seven major recommendations to advocate for the children.

“The president, the U.S. Congress, and federal government agencies must not lose sight of their legal, moral, and ethical responsibility to keep vulnerable children safe from harm. We have a proud tradition of extending protection to those who seek refuge on our shores. It is time to stop giving in to passing financial, political, and institutional pressures—with the lives of children at stake—and instead to commit to a consistent principled approach to the care and custody of unaccompanied migrant children,” said the report.



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Infowars speaks with leader of 3301 hacking group


A hacking group known as 3301 breached the website of abortion-provider Planned Parenthood Sunday evening, obtaining everything from employee names to email addresses.

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Speaking with Infowars over encrypted channels, a member of 3301 known simply as “E” detailed the group’s motive and the specific information obtained during the attack.

“There’s the typical things you’d find in any database: usernames, emails, passwords…” E said. “Then there’s, of course, data pertaining to PP’s line of work.”

According to E, the hack was in response to recently released sting videos which showed Planned Parenthood employees discussing the sale of harvested body parts from aborted fetuses.

“The specific video where the PP employee exclaims she ‘wants a Lamborghini’ was definitely antagonizing and ultimately catalyzed the hack,” E said. “We’re against what PP perpetuates on society.”

Although support for abortion is often divided along political lines, E denied any adherence to mainstream political ideologies.

“Liberal vs conservative. Left vs right. It’s all bullshit to me…” E added. “I don’t subscribe to any political groups or anything that may divide or distance myself from other people.”

“Our incentive isn’t to hurt people. Sometimes they just need to be brought back down to earth.”

E says 3301 will continue to release information as it is analyzed, noting that the group has “already infiltrated extremely high-profile targets.”  When asked what specifically would be published, E hinted at data possibly related to the 2016 presidential election.

“We’ve had our eyes on the U.S. presidential election race,” E said. “That’s all I’ll disclose at this time.”

Depending on the magnitude, the information could potentially further harm Planned Parenthood’s public image and finances, as was recently seen when representatives from Coca-Cola, Ford Motor Co. and Xeroxasked to have their names removed from the company’s corporate donor list.

In an email to the Daily Dot, which first broke the story Monday, Planned Parenthood’s executive vice president of U.S. federations called the hack a “new low.”

“We’ve seen the claims around attempts to access our systems,” Dawn Laguens wrote. “We take security very seriously and are investigating. It’s unsurprising that those opposed to safe and legal abortion are participating in this campaign of harassment against us and our patients, and claiming to stoop to this new low.”

POLL: Trump Leads GOP Field Among Hispanics, Records 34% Favorability

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Presidential candidate Donald Trump leads other GOP contenders among Hispanics, a recent poll shows.

Trump recorded a 34% favorability rating among Hispanics in a national poll conducted by Public Policy Polling (PPP) among 1,087 registered voters between July 20-21.

Trump has made immigration a seminal part of his campaign, receiving praise, but also criticism, from the political left and right.

During a much-publicized visit to the border in Laredo, TX last Thursday, Trump told reporters he thought he would “win the Hispanic vote.”

Gov. Bush (R-FL) follows Trump with a 31% favorability rating among Hispanics, and Senator Cruz is close behind with 30%.

Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Rand Paul (R-KY) both recorded 29%, Gov. Scott Walker (WI-R) 26%, and businesswoman Carly Fiorina 25%.

Rounding out the poll was Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) with 21%, and former Gov. Mike Huckabee (R-AK) and neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson, both with 16%.

Announced GOP candidates Gov. John Kasich, former Gov. George Pataki (R-NY),  former Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX), former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA), and Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC) were not presented among the results.

Former Sec. of State Hillary Clinton leads Democrats with a 50% favorability rating among Hispanics, followed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) 38%, former Gov. Martin O’Malley (D-MD) 18%, Gov. Lincoln Chafee (D-RI) 16%, and Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA) 13%.

PPP stated the margin of error for the overall survey was +/-3%. 80% of respondents were reached by phone, and 20% through the internet.