Joseph Wulfsohn

The Federalist senior editor Mollie Hemingway and Washington Post columnist Marc Thiessen butted heads during the Special Report “All-Star” panel over President Donald Trump’s response to the anti-Muslim shootings that took place in New Zealand last week.

On Friday, President Trump expressed his condolences on Twitter for the 49 people who were shot in mosques by a white nationalist, but later dismissed the idea to reporters that white nationalism was “on the rise.”

Thiessen began by calling the efforts made by Democrats and the media to link Trump to the terror attack “absurd,” but insisted that he’s “vulnerable” to such criticism because he hasn’t “definitively rejected the alt-right” in the U.S.

Hemingway interjected, telling Thiessen what he said was “not true” and pointed to Trump’s remarks after Charlottesville where he said, “I am not talking about neo-Nazis and white nationalist because they should be condemned totally,” something she noted was from the same event as his “both sides” comments.

“When he condemns people by name, it doesn’t get mentioned and that is something that the media has done a very bad job at telling the truth on,” Hemingway said to Thiessen.

The Washington Post columnist doubled down, saying that the alt-right is “claiming” the president compared his failure to condemn them to House Democrats’ recent failure to only condemn anti-Semitism amid the controversy surrounding Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn.

“We are all responsible for policing our own movements and Donald Trump has not effectively done that when it comes to the alt-right,” Thiessen told the panel.

Hemingway called it “frustrating” when Trump’s condemnation of neo-Nazis and white supremacists go unacknowledged and stressed how the shooter said in his manifesto that he wanted to get the media to have these conversations to “blame certain people for what he did.”

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“The fact that this is the nature of the conversation we’re having right now when there is this attack, we should be talking about the people who were murdered and the victims and what they have gone through,” Hemmingway added.

Meanwhile, NPR national political correspondent Mara Liasson pointed to how conservatives “rightly” pushed Democrats and President Barack Obama to call out Islamic terrorism and that “for the same reason,” President Trump should be calling out and rejecting white supremacy “by its name.”

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New York Democratic Senator and 2020 presidential candidate Kirsten Gillibrand defended her stance on leading the ousting of Sen. Al Franken in early 2018.

During a televised town hall on Monday night, Gillibrand was asked by MSNBC host Chris Hayes about her role in Franken’s resignation as well as the sexual harassment controversy that took place on her own staff.

Gillibrand first responded by saying that society must  “value women” and mentioned a bill she co-sponsored with Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Tex, on how Congress handles sexual harassment.

Earlier this month, it was reported that a former female staffer of Gillibrand’s resigned over her office’s mishandling of misconduct allegations against a male colleague. Gillibrand insisted at the town hall that the female staffer was "believed" and the allegations were "fully investigated." She concluded the actions of the male staffer "didn’t rise to sexual harassment" but that he was "punished" for making derogatory comments.

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She then addressed Franken, which she referred to as a “hard issue for so many Democrats.”

“The truth is we miss him and people loved him, but he had eight credible allegations against him of sexual harassment for groping, two of them since he was a senator and the eighth one was a congressional staffer. And I had a choice to make whether to stay silent or not, whether to say, ‘That’s not OK with me,’ and I decided to say that,” the New York senator said. “Now, Senator Franken was entitled to whatever type of review or process he wanted. He could have stuck it out, stayed in the Senate, gone through his ethics committee investigation for as long as he wants for ever how many months, he could have sued all of the eight women, those were his choices. But I had to make my choice.”

The 2020 candidate also went into detail about the “upsetting” conversations she would have with her son about Franken.

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“As a mother, I have to be very clear. It is not OK for anyone to grope a woman anywhere on her body without her consent. It is not OK to forcibly kiss a woman, ever, without her consent. It was not OK for Sen. Franken and it is not OK for you, Theo. Ever,” Gillibrand told her oldest son. “So I needed to have clarity. And if there are few, Democratic powerful donors who are angry because I stood up for women who came forward with allegations of sexual harassment, that’s on them.”

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2020 presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren insisted Monday that her disputed claims of Native American heritage, for which she later apologized, had no role in the advancement of her career.

During a CNN town hall in Jackson, Miss., the Massachusetts Democrat was asked by U.S. Army Reserve Officer Brennan Breeland how she responded to critics who said her handling of questions about her heritage was “tone-deaf, offensive, and indicative of a lack of presidential tact.”

“Well… you know… I grew up in Oklahoma. I learned about my family from my family. And based on that, that’s just kind of who I am and I do the best I can with it,” the senator responded. “You know, there was an investigation, nothing I ever did or my family played any role in any job I ever got.”

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Warren went on to tell Breeland that she had done “38 town halls” in her state last year and another 32 of them since January and observed that people “care a lot about what’s happening in their lives” like housing, education, and health care.

“That’s the kind of reason that I’m in this fight and I’m gonna stay in this fight,” Warren continued. “And, I’ll tell you this; I’m gonna fight it from the heart every inch of the way. I’ll do my best.”

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CNN anchor Jake Tapper, who moderated the town hall, continued without any follow-up questions.

Warren has been on the defense about her previous claims of Native American heritage when seeking law-school work before she was elected senator. Earlier this year she issued an apology for claiming “Indian American” as her race on the Texas State Bar registration card — and apologized to the Cherokee Nation for releasing results of a DNA test indicating she had Native American ancestry dating back several generations.

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2020 White House candidate Cory Booker denied he’s a socialist and vowed he would not consider pardoning President Trump if he were elected to the White House, in an interview Monday night.

"I am for capitalism and I’m tired of companies engaging in socialism where they outsource their costs… I am a capitalist. Monopolies are not capitalism… I’m not a socialist. I am a Democrat. I believe in fundamental Democratic principles. I believe that we need more democracy, not less," the New Jersey Democrat told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews.

The cable news host also brought up then-President Gerald Ford pardoning Richard Nixon in 1974 — and posed a hypothetical to Booker.

“Would you consider pardoning Trump if you took the presidency?” Matthews asked.

“No,” Booker firmly responded.

“Why?” Matthews followed. “You said you want to unite the country. Wouldn’t that unite the country?”

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Booker asked for clarification as to what crime Trump may have committed, which Matthews responded with “obstruction of justice,” something the MSNBC host insisted is “certainly in play.”

“This is why our justice system has lost so much legitimacy,” Booker continued. “We have a criminal justice system that treats you better if you’re rich and guilty than if you’re poor and innocent. There’s a whole bunch of people that, if I’m president, that I’m looking to pardon or who are being punished unjustly in this country.”

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The former Newark mayor cited statistics that showed more arrests in 2017 were related to marijuana than to all violent crimes combined. He said the “privileged” on Yale University’s campus and presidents and senators who have “bragged” about smoking marijuana benefited from a double standard as opposed to young people who have criminal records for doing the same.

“Now we’re talking about a billionaire getting another pardon,” Booker said.

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President Trump condemned Friday’s massacre in Christchurch, New Zealand, but National Journal politics editor Josh Kraushaar suggested that the president go beyond the remarks he gave at the White House.

The shootings at two mosques left at least 49 dead and dozens more injured. At the White House, Trump called the attack “evil,” but said he didn’t believe that white supremacy violence was on the rise, and said such acts were perpetrated by only a small group of people.

Still, many Democrats and members of the mainstream media have been linking Trump to the terrorist attack and pointing to his past rhetoric, which the critics contend was motivation for the shooting suspect, who referred to the president in his manifesto.

During Friday’s "Special Report" All-Star panel, Kraushaar — along with Washington Post columnist Marc Thiessen and the Federalist senior editor Mollie Hemingway — weighed in on the fallout of the New Zealand attack and the president’s response.

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Thiessen began by knocking the left’s “reflex” action of blaming Trump and guns after every mass shooting. He noted the hypocrisy of the left, which refused to connect Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., to the Alexandria, Va., shooting of U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., at the hands of a former Sanders campaign worker.

“If you want to find someone to blame," Thiessen said, "social media is a good place to start. Social media is the accelerant that allows these things to happen."

He then recounted how the New Zealand suspect allegedly live-streamed the attack on Facebook, shared it on YouTube, and engaged with other white nationalists on platforms like Reddit and Twitter.

Kraushaar agreed with Thiessen on the significance of social media in such attacks, but insisted that President Trump could have more forcefully denounced such violence.

“It would be a welcome gesture for President Trump not just to respond in the Oval Office but to give a speech condemning anti-Muslim bigotry and really giving a message from the White House to the rest of the world that this type of rhetoric that inspired this white supremacist killer is absolutely unacceptable,” Kraushaar said.

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Meanwhile, Hemingway urged everyone in the media not to “highlight” the killers of these attacks but to focus on the victims instead. She also cautioned against spreading news about the manifesto, saying it could potentially sow divisions among Americans.

“Responsible media outlets should make sure that they’re careful about how they talk about it so that these acts of hatred don’t further spread,” Hemingway said. “Sometimes downplaying the significance of what the hater believed can be helpful and just focusing people on loving one another and not letting these acts of evil overcome.”

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Chelsea Clinton received an earful in New York City on Friday night from a college student who said the former first daughter "stoked" the hatred behind the massacre earlier in the day in Christchurch, New Zealand.

It happened at a vigil on the New York University campus for the 49 people killed and dozens of others wounded in the attack.

“I’m so sorry that you feel that way,” Clinton responded. “Certainly, it was never my intention. I do believe words matter. I believe we have to show solidarity.”

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Some of the NYU students told Clinton she wasn’t welcome at the vigil. One of the students referred to Clinton’s recent condemnation of Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn, over the congresswoman’s anti-Semitic remarks.

"We should expect all elected officials, regardless of party, and all public figures to not traffic in anti-Semitism," Clinton tweeted on Feb. 10.

“This, right here, is a result of a massacre stoked by people like you and the words that you put out into the world,” one student told Clinton. “And I want you to know that and I want you to feel that deep down inside. Forty-nine people died because of the rhetoric you put out there.”

On Friday, Clinton tweeted her condolences regarding the Christchurch tragedy.

"Heartbroken & horrified by the white nationalist terrorist attack during Jummah on the mosques and Muslim community in Christchurch," Clinton wrote. "Keeping all affected by this tragedy in my heart and prayers. We need a global response to the global threat of violent white nationalism."

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“I’m so sorry that you feel that way,” Clinton repeated.

“What does ‘I’m sorry you feel that way’ mean?” another student asked.

The NYU student who originally posted the video on Twitter deleted her tweets, but the exchange was re-posted by Targeted Victory’s Caleb Hull.

After the video of the confrontation went viral, Clinton received support on social media. Some examples:

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Students from around the world took to the streets and protested what they see as a lack of urgency on tackling climate change.

Thousands of students and adults from over 100 countries organized demonstrations through social media and via word of mouth. In all, 150,000 protesters mobilized across Europe.

Protests also took place in the U.S. although the turnout wasn’t nearly as robust.

Eight-year-old Havana Chapman-Edwards, who refers to herself as a “tiny diplomat,” spoke to a group of protesters at the U.S. Capitol.

Students play with an inflatable globe as they march to demand action on climate change, in Rome, Friday. (Alessandro Di Meo/ANSA via AP)

Students play with an inflatable globe as they march to demand action on climate change, in Rome, Friday. (Alessandro Di Meo/ANSA via AP)

“Borders, languages and religions do not separate us. … Today we are telling the truth and we do not take no for an answer,” Chapman-Edwards declared.

Alexandria Villasenor, 13, helped organize a “die-in” at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

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"It won’t be successful until the world leaders take some action," Villasenor said.

Roughly 1,000 protesters gathered in San Francisco outside the offices of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Diane Feinstein in order to pressure Democrats to pass the Green New Deal. Another 1,000 gathered at the state capitol in St. Paul, Minn., where they chanted, “Stop denying the earth is dying.”

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U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, slammed a U.S. Justice Department decision to seek a FISA warrant — and blasted what he described as the deceitful methods used to persuade the FISA court to grant it — during an appearance on Fox News’ "Hannity” on Thursday night.

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“They didn’t tell the court the dossier was unverified," Jordan told Fox News host Sean Hannity, referring to the court created under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. "They didn’t tell the court who paid for it, namely the Clinton campaign. They didn’t tell the court that Christopher Steele, the guy who wrote it, was desperate that Trump not win. They didn’t tell the court that Christopher Steele had been fired by the FBI because he’s out leaking information. That’s a lot not to share with a secret court, especially, Sean, when you’re getting a warrant to go spy on the other party’s campaign.

"They didn’t tell the court who paid for it, namely the Clinton campaign."

— U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio

Jordan, 55, the ranking member of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, and member of the House Judiciary Committee, called for a “single standard” for everyone when it comes to breaking the law, saying there shouldn’t be a separate set a rules for people named “Comey,” “Clinton,” “Lynch,” among others.

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“All the way up until May 17, 2017, when they named Bob Mueller special counsel, they had zero, zero evidence of any type of collusion,” Jordan continued. “All of that time and still no evidence, and yet they moved ahead with this whole thing.”

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The 12 Senate Republicans who joined Democrats on Thursday in blocking President Trump’s national emergency declaration might not be able to override what’s expected to be Trump’s first veto since taking office, but their show of opposition to the president remains significant, Washington Examiner chief political correspondent Byron York argued.

The president’s call for action at the U.S.-Mexico border went down in defeat, 59-41, as Republicans senators including Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Susan Collins and Mitt Romney said no to a plan that included spending about $8 billion on a border wall.

During Thursday’s "Special Report" All-Star panel, York — along with USA Today Washington bureau chief Susan Page and Washington Free Beacon editor-in-chief Matthew Continetti — weighed in on the fallout from the vote and what’s next for Trump’s proposal.

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York began by telling the panel that the White House feels “very confident” that Trump’s declaration will be upheld by the Supreme Court. He then pointed to the 12 Republican defectors who thought the declaration was an executive overreach.

“That is the biggest rejection, the biggest Republican rejection we’ve seen of the president so far in this presidency. That is a big deal even if the veto can’t be overturned,” York told the panel.

“That is the biggest rejection … we’ve seen of the president so far in this presidency. That is a big deal even if the veto can’t be overturned.”

— Byron York, Washington Examiner chief political correspondent

York added that the border-wall construction can “go ahead” based on funding that has already been appropriated by Congress.

Page pointed out that of the 10 Republicans who are up for reelection in 2020, only one — Collins of Maine — voted against Trump, and that Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., who wrote an op-ed opposing the declaration, ultimately “flipped” and voted with the president.

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Meanwhile, Continetti said “two issues” were taking place, one being the crisis at the southern border due to an influx of migrants and the other being whether President Trump has the constitutional authority to reallocate funds approved by the Congress.

“What I don’t understand are the Democrats, who deny the existence on the border, but at the same time hope that the courts uphold Trump’s effort to declare an emergency because they want to use the powers themselves for climate change and/or gun control," Continetti said. "That is being intellectually dishonest."

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U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., slammed those expressing thoughts and prayers for the victims of Friday’s mass shooting in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Reacting to remarks made by New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Ocasio-Cortez took to Twitter and invoked other mass shootings that took place in houses of worship.

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“At 1st I thought of saying, ‘Imagine being told your house of faith isn’t safe anymore.’ But I couldn’t say ‘imagine.’ Because of Charleston. Pittsburgh. Sutherland Springs,’” Ocasio-Cortez wrote.

The congresswoman was referencing the 2015 Charleston shooting at the Emmanuel A.M.E. Church that left nine dead, the 2017 Sutherland Springs shooting at the First Baptist Church that left 27 dead, and the 2018 Pittsburgh shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue that left 11 dead.

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“What good are your thoughts & prayers when they don’t even keep the pews safe?” she asked.

That sparked plenty of backlash on social media.

Source: Fox News Politics


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