Facing a rocky confirmation process, Chuck Hagel today defended his record before his former Senate colleagues, including an openly impatient Sen. John McCain. "I´m on the record on many issues, but no one individual vote, no one individual quote, no one individual statement defines me," Hagel said in his opening statement at his first confirmation hearing for secretary of defense. "My overall worldview has never changed: that America has and must maintain the strongest military in the world, that we must lead in the international community to confront threats and challenges together," Hagel said. Headline resplit by staff.
Normally when a newspaper gets a friendly cite during a public event, they’re pretty happy about it. When the Washington Post gets praise from a conservative like Senator Jim Inhofe, they should be delighted about it. Rosie Gray reports at Buzzfeed that instead of popping the bubbly, the Post is breaking out into open civil war: Senator Jim Inhofe cited a blog post by conservative Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin during the confirmation hearing for Secretary of Defense nominee Chuck Hagel on Thursday, setting in motion a public argument on Twitter.
The president of the National Rifle Association Thursday warned that gun control advocates have their eye on a national registry of all firearms that would be used to force legal owners to sell them to the government. David Keene told reporters, "we have been, continue to be, and will continue to be very opposed to any kind of a national gun registry system for several reasons. The historic reason, of course, is that that is a precursor in many cases of confiscation." While he noted that Washington´s biggest gun control advocate, California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Headline corrected by staff.
Richard Nixon, not known for his sense of humor, used to joke that he was an “expert” on Vietnam because he had visited it nineteen times. He would then admit most of these sojourns were refueling stops on the way to somewhere else. Staff would laugh and agree the boss was truly expert on the region. Hillary Clinton has developed the same sort of foreign policy credentials, but without the humor. Yes, it’s true that she has been to many conferences and had many meetings with foreign dignitaries, but as far as actually having worked
The National Labor Relations Board sided with the United Food and Commercial Workers Union and against Wal-Mart today in a case in which the retailer claimed the union was illegally picketing them. The board simply accepted at face value the union’s claim that it was not trying to organize the retail giant’s workforce and its promise not to do it again … for 60 days at least. Federal law says a union cannot picket a worksite for more than 30 days without officially filing to try to organize its workforce.
The White House on Thursday warned Syria not to transfer weapons to Hizbullah, as tensions mounted following reported Israeli raids on a military research center and a weapons convoy. "Syria should not further destabilize the region by transferring weaponry to Hizbullah," said Ben Rhodes, a US deputy national security advisor. Syria on Thursday warned that it reserves the right to retaliate to what it says was an Israeli air strike on a military research center near Damascus, as it lodged a complaint with the United Nations. (Snip) Although Israel and Syria are technically still at war, the
Al Qaeda has issued a new threat to carry out ´earth-shattering, shocking and terrifying´ attacks on the U.S. and Europe, it emerged today. In a posting on a jihadist website, the terror group said the ´coming strikes´ would target the ´heart of the land of non-belief´ as well as countries aiding France in its crackdown on rebels in Mali. The unidentified writer claimed the attacks would be ´group and lone-wolf operations, in addition to the use of booby-trapped vehicles´. U.S. officials say they are taking the threat seriously.
WASHINGTON — Is your workplace getting shot up by a crazed gunman? No problem — just grab a pair of scissors and fight back! That’s some of the helpful advice in a new instructional video from the Department of Homeland Security that was posted on the agency’s Web site just a month after the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. “If you are caught out in the open and cannot conceal yourself or take cover, you might consider trying to overpower the shooter with whatever means are available,” says the
LOS ANGELES — Barack Obama is officially the Affirmative Action President. Unfortunately he is not the "Affirmative Action Retired President," since the original AARP and other liberal groups refused to retire him. Under the Obama watch the economy has contracted, the debt has skyrocketed, environmental "investments" have gone bankrupt, anti-business policies have stifled growth; Americans are being murdered and kidnapped globally. Numerous scandals, alleged superior ingelligence beset by sub-par performance, are coupled with the failed policies of the administration to become the open secrets many dare not utter.
WORCESTER - The Roman Catholic Diocese of Worcester has rescinded an invitation to a speaker at a men´s conference after Muslims objected to what they call the speaker´s anti-Islamic views. The diocese on Wednesday withdrew an invitation for Robert Spencer to speak at the March conference. Spencer, a Catholic, runs blogs and has written books that some consider anti-Muslim. A spokesman for the diocese says Spencer´s appearance at the conference "is being seen as harmful to Catholic-Islamic relations." A spokesman for the Islamic Council of New England called Spencer a "hatemonger" and lauded the diocese´s decision.
Coyness is not part of Chris Christie’s repertoire, which does not stress subtlety, delicacy and intimation. New Jersey’s governor is more Mickey Spillane than Jane Austen and his persona, which sometimes is that of a bulldog who got up on the wrong side of the bed, is so popular he seems to be cruising toward re-election this November and does not deny that he might look beyond that. His budget for 2013 calls for spending less than did the state’s 2008 budget. He has vetoed a tax on millionaires three times. He has scrapped, exuberantly, with public-employee unions.
The U.S. Justice Department is trying to keep Budweiser and Corona apart. Justice is challenging the proposed $20.1 billion buyout of Mexico´s Grupo Modelo, brewer of Corona beer, by Anheuser-Busch InBev, brewer of Budweiser. The government says the deal would put too many top beer brands in the hands of a single company, limiting competition. The concern is especially high in 26 U.S. cities. Investors reacted negatively to the news. Industry consolidation has been rampant in the beer and spirits industry and is viewed as a way for companies to boost profit by cutting costs.
The amount of money being sent by migrants to their families back home topped £335billion last year, making it a larger economy than Iran or Argentina, it was revealed today. The figure has tripled in the last ten years and is now three times bigger than the total aid budgets given by countries around the world as more people than ever choose to live abroad.(Snip)Globally, there are more than 214million migrants, which would make it the fifth most-populated country behind China, India, America and Indonesia. World Bank officials believe the amount they donate could be billions more
Moscow - North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has issued a secret order to put the country under martial law in preparation for a third nuclear test in its history, a South Korean newspaper reported on Thursday. Kim Jong-un convened an emergency meeting with top defense and security officials last Saturday and supposedly said: “The country will be under martial law starting from midnight on January 29, and all the frontline and central units should be ready for a war,” Korean Joongang Daily reported, citing an unidentified source. The paper also speculated that the new nuclear test could be held
The welcome materials the federal government directs new immigrants to read — which detail, among other facets of American life, how and where to get government benefits — are in the process of getting a bit of a makeover to increase accessibility for newcomers. The WelcometoUSA.gov website, which bills itself as “the U.S. Government’s official web portal for new immigrants,” maintained by the Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), will soon feature information about President Barack Obama’s signature health care legislation, USCIS spokesman Chris Bentley told The Daily Caller.
The Obama administration has stopped using the term “exchanges” to describe part of the healthcare law because the word doesn’t translate into Spanish, an official said Thursday. Anton Gunn, director of External Affairs at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), said the rebranding of the insurance exchanges as "marketplaces" was geared toward Spanish speakers who will use the system. "We´re going to use the word ´marketplace´ because it actually makes sense to people," Gunn said at a conference in Washington, D.C. " ´Exchange´ doesn´t translate to anything in Spanish, but ´marketplace´ does."
The Senate rejected an amendment to the House debt-ceiling suspension bill that would have required a dollar in spending cuts for every dollar increase in future the debt ceiling extensions. Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) introduced the amendments, which was tabled on a 54-44 vote. He said the amendment “assures that every time we raise the debt limit we cut spending by the same amount over a 10 year period.” Portman said his amendment would have saved the country $3 trillion.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Thursday said the American economy is "in a recovery" despite the decline in the nation´s gross domestic product (GDP). Reid made the remark after Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blamed the White House for the unexpected contraction in the economy. “[McConnell] continues bad mouthing the recovery,” Reid said on the Senate floor. “We are in a recovery.” On Wednesday, the Commerce Department announced that the nation´s economy unexpectedly shrank by 0.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012. Echoing the White House,
The Equifax credit reporting agency, with the aid of thousands of human resource departments around the country, has assembled what may be the most powerful and thorough private database of Americans’ personal information ever created, containing 190 million employment and salary records covering more than one-third of U.S. adults. Some of the information in the little-known database, created through an Equifax-owned company called The Work Number, is sold to debt collectors, financial service companies and other entities. "It´s the biggest privacy breach in our time,
One of the more lamentable traits of neoconservatism has been steadily to try and lower the bar of who—or what—is deemed anti-Semitic. Elliott Abrams, for example, recently denounced former Senator and Defense Secretary nominee Chuck Hagel as an anti-Semite, a grave accusation that boomeranged on him as even Council on Foreign Relations president Richard Haass, nominally Abrams´ boss, felt constrained to observe that it was a preposterous statement. Now a web site called the Washington Free Beacon, which is edited by Matthew Continetti, a son-in-law of William Kristol, who is the editor of the Weekly Standard,
Washington - The U.S. Justice Department has filed a lawsuit seeking to stop Anheuser-Busch InBev SA (ABI.BR) from buying the half of Mexican brewer Grupo Modelo (GMODELOC.MX) that it does not already own, saying the $20.1 billion deal would lessen competition in the U.S. beer market. (Snip) InBev said in a statement that the Justice Department´s decision to sue to stop the deal was "inconsistent with the law, the facts and the reality of the market place." "We remain confident in our position, and we intend to vigorously contest the DOJ´s action in federal court," the statement said.
The high-profile federal raid on a South Florida ophthalmologist’s office was more about potential Medicare fraud than about U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez, a longtime friend of Dr. Salomon Melgen. Joining FBI agents on the two-day raid at the doctor’s West Palm Beach eye center: a team of investigators from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which investigates Medicare wrongdoing. (Snip)FBI agents are investigating the allegations of a shadowy tipster who claimed the doctor flew Menendez on his plane to the Dominican Republic. Earlier this month, Menendez quietly sent a $58,500 personal check to Melgen’s company to reimburse
Federal Election Commission records show that Dr. Salomon Melgen, the Miami ophthalmologist connected to New Jersey Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez’s alleged prostitution scandal, has financed several high-ranking politicians from both political parties. Over the years, Melgen and his wife Flor donated $2,000 to former President Bill Clinton and another $4,700 to outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s various campaigns. Melgen donated $3,000 to Hugh Rodham, Hillary’s brother, for his unsuccessful 1994 Senate campaign, and $1,000 to Al Gore’s failed 2000 bid for president. Melgen and his wife together donated $9,600 to former
Nine current and former Philadelphia Traffic Court judges and three others were charged by the U.S. Attorney in a corruption indictment and other documents unsealed by the the U.S. Attorney Thursday morning. Charged were current Judges Michael Sullivan and Michael Lowry; former Judges Robert Mulgrew, Fortunato Perri Sr., Willie Singletary and Thomasine Tynes; and three suburban district court judges who sometimes filled in for Philadelphia Traffic Court judges. Those suburban district judges are Mark A. Bruno of Chester County, Warren Hogeland of Bucks County and Kenneth Miller of Delaware County. Those judges were scheduled to appear before
A trio of Republican senators today introduced a bill to block NLRB actions in the wake of a D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that President Obama’s recess appointments to the labor authority were unconstitutional. The Restoring the Constitutional Balance of Power Act of 2013 would prohibit the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) from enforcing or implementing decisions and regulations without a constitutionally confirmed board or director.