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Carlos Garcia

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The police were able to save the statue from the rioters

Social media videos showed violent clashes between police and demonstrators trying to erect a “Black House Autonomous Zone” and topple the statue of former U.S. President Andrew Jackson in Lafayette Square on Monday.

The riots are just the latest in a series of protests, some of which turned violent, in the wake of the May 25 killing of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis police.

Protesters were attaching ropes and chains to the statue to force it down when Metropolitan Police and U.S. Park Police rode in and formed a protective barrier around the statue.

At the end of a video posted by reporter Shomari Stone, protesters can he seen coughing after police spray them with some kind of chemical agent.

Another video shows numerous police spraying protesters.

Other videos shows scuffles and fights breaking out between the police and the protesters.

Eventually calm returned to the area. Police said protesters were throwing objects at them but no officers were seriously hurt. Two protesters were arrested.

President Donald Trump tweeted about the clashes outside the White House and warned the protesters about what law enforcement punishment they might face.

“Numerous people arrested in D.C. for the disgraceful vandalism, in Lafayette Park, of the magnificent Statue of Andrew Jackson, in addition to the exterior defacing of St. John’s Church across the street,” he tweeted.

“10 years in prison under the Veteran’s Memorial Preservation Act. Beware!” he added.

CNN’s Kaitlann Collins reported that the Secret Service had removed all media off of the White House grounds as soon as the protests nearby flared up.

She also posted a photograph of the historic St. John’s church after it was vandalized with graffiti of “BHAZ,” for “Black House Autonomous Zone.”

Here’s more video from the clashes:

Author: Carlos Garcia

Source: The Blaze: Chaos erupts between police and rioters trying to topple Andrew Jackson statue and create ‘Black House Autonomous Zone’

Bill de Blasio is a man walking a very thin line very badly.

On one hand, de Blasio is the most progressive mayor in New York’s history. When the protests over George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis police custody hit the city, he was expected to strike a different tone — to throw his lot entirely with the dispossessed and to realize that, if there were (ahem) excesses, they were insurrections against injustice, not riots. After all, this was an unarmed black man who died at the hands of a white cop who kept his knee on Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes. That kind of horror should obviously be met with a type of horror of its own.

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On the other hand, de Blasio actually runs a city and that city’s in pretty bad shape. New York is the worldwide locus of the novel coronavirus, and in addition to the human toll, the economic toll has been pretty rough, as well. There’s also the strained relationship he has with his police department, which is problematic when they are the civil servants who’re expected to maintain order in a civilized manner and to recognize what the law enforcement priorities ought to be when met with a situation like this.

And all of this is to say nothing of the fact that this comes in the middle of a pandemic during which de Blasio has come under fire for his public battles with the Orthodox Jewish community, a pitched conflict that has led to charges of anti-Semitism on Hizzoner’s part.

De Blasio has tried to balance all of these priorities — poorly.

Now, even though the situation is out of control and every stakeholder in this mess loathes him, he’s still refusing help from Immigration and Customs Enforcement because — well, they’re Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Yes, ICE is active in Gotham, and that’s probably going to make some people upset, given the fact that the agency isn’t particularly popular with the left.

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However, this isn’t as part of an immigration roundup. The revelation that agents from Homeland Security Investigations were in the city came after they detained a Puerto Rican man, which led to a viral video and all kinds of panic:

According to a spokeswoman for HSI New York, however, this was about agents working with local law enforcement, not any kind of action against individuals based on their immigration status.

“HSI has the authority to make criminal arrests as needed,” HSI New York spokeswoman Rachel Yong Yow said, according to Time. “HSI Special Agents identified a person considered to be in possession of a weapon and a threat to the public safety. No arrests were made.”

Thankfully, we know what the mayor thinks about this:

“I would not let ICE agents anywhere in the official capacity in New York City, except for what they’re allowed to do on their own,” de Blasio said Monday. “I’ve said ICE agents are not welcome in our public buildings. I have no knowledge and really don’t believe that happened. If anyone has evidence of it, I need to know it.

“But no, we do not want ICE in this city. And the times when they have come forward trying to get into a city building, for example, they’ve been told only if they have warrants and the law department approves it. So we’ve been pretty consistent about that.”

This would be great if he were adequately supporting the NYPD. The NYPD might have something to say about that, particularly after two officers were shot during the protests and de Blasio has made tentative moves toward defunding the department.

“They feel abandoned by everyone,” Paul DiGiacomo, the president of the NYPD’s detectives union, told Fox News Monday. “There is no one supporting the police, from the governor to the mayor to the DAs to the City Council.”

As for complaints that videos showed police officers using excessive force, DiGiacomo responded that it was a natural outgrowth of the ugliness of the riots.

“Listen, when there is unrest and criminality out there, it never looks pretty,” he said. “Resisting arrest never looks pretty. They never show you the whole video.

“I challenge any elected officials who think they could do a better job with urine being thrown at them, bottles, and being shot at.”

A Tuesday report from the Washington Examiner quoted several rank-and-file New York police officers as saying they were planning to leave the force over their treatment during the riots that branched off of the Floyd protests.

“At our level, it’s hard to say, but in the past, you felt like chiefs like [Joseph] Esposito had your back. Even Ray Kelly. Without Rudy [Giuliani] or even with [Michael] Bloomberg, things have changed,” one sergeant told the Examiner.

“The rumor is over 600 went to pension,” he said. “I have less uniformed cops by me.”

“There’s protests throughout the city almost every single year, like Occupy Wall Street,” Sergeants Benevolent Association Ed Mullins said of the situation under de Blasio. “But in my 16 years, this is, by far, probably the worst I’ve seen from upper management.”

Meanwhile, Black Lives Matter activists felt that the mayor was being too soft on the NYPD, and legitimate protesters were angered by the city’s curfews.

De Blasio attended a memorial for Floyd in Brooklyn over the weekend but was “drowned out by booing,” according to Fox News.

This is to say nothing of the Orthodox Jewish community, which was blasted and threatened by de Blasio for hosting a funeral for a beloved rabbi while the much larger memorial for Floyd went on unabated.

The situation in New York City was so bad that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a fellow Democrat, called de Blasio’s handling of the riots a “disgrace” last Tuesday and said he had the power to “displace” de Blasio, although he didn’t plan to do so.

And now we’re going after ICE.

I get that ICE isn’t a particularly popular arm of law enforcement in New York City at the moment, but the moment isn’t a particularly good one for anyone and, sans this viral video, the agency has kept a low profile. The moment to appease the people who drowned him out with boos is over.

Meanwhile, the moment to potentially avert any more economic or criminal damage to the city hardest-hit by COVID-19 still exists. Investigating how many ICE agents are in New York and what their roles are is a useless task the city would do well to avoid.

The mayor is Bill de Blasio, however.

New York won’t avoid it.

Author: C. Douglas Golden

Source: Western Journal: Watch: De Blasio Says ‘We Do Not Want ICE In This City’ Amid Reports of Agents Showing Up at Protests

The U.S. is cracking down on Chinese espionage efforts

A top scientist at Harvard University has been indicted by the Justice Department for lying about his involvement with a tech university in Wuhan, China.

The charges were outlined in a news release from the DOJ on Tuesday.

Dr. Charles Lieber, 61, is alleged to have lied about participating in China’s “Thousand Talents Program,” which lures top scientists to China.

Lieber was the former chair of Harvard University’s Chemistry and Chemical Biology Department, and made headlines in 2015 when his work there led to the implantation of “cyborg tissue” into the brains of mice.

Now he faces five years in prison over charges that he lied to Harvard and to the government over his position as “Strategic Scientist” at Wuhan University of Technology in China.

Prosecutors allege that he was paid a salary of up to $50,000 a month to set up the laboratory for the WUT, with additional living expenses paid up to $158,000.

Lieber has maintained his innocence.

Conspiracy theory enthusiasts on social media have suggested that Lieber had something to do with creating and spreading the coronavirus pandemic, but there is no evidence of such a connection.

Also on Tuesday, a report from the Daily Caller News Foundation documented that a Chinese propaganda outlet had paid almost $20 million since 2016 to American media companies.

Here’s more about Lieber’s arrest:

Author: Carlos Garcia

Source: The Blaze: Harvard professor indicted for concealing his lab work with a university in Wuhan, China

She got into a heated exchange with Ryan Lizza of Politico

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany shut down a reporter pressing her for a number of dead Americans that should be considered a success for the coronavirus response by the Trump administration.

Ryan Lizza of Politico asked the question during Tuesday’s media briefing.

“What does the White House view, as having by election day, what does the White House view as the number of dead Americans where you can say that you successfully defeated this pandemic?” asked Lizza. “Is there a number?”

“Yeah, you know, every loss of life counts,” responded McEnany.

“We say 100,000, but like the president says, one death is something to be mourned. These 100,000 individuals have a face, the president takes this very seriously, it’s why he lowered the flag to half-staff for three days to remember these men and women,” she continued.

“I think, you know, Dr. Birx said it best when she said that in their estimates they had anywhere between 1.5 and 2.2 million people in the U.S. succumbing to the virus if we didn’t shut down the economy. The president made the very hard choice of shutting down the economy, so we avoided that extraordinary number,” McEnany explained.

“One death is too many; we never want to see a single individual lose their life,” she concluded, “but that being said, to be under significantly that high mark shows that the president did everything in his power and help to make this number as low as humanly possible.”

Lizza put the same question to McEnany again.

“So when voters go to the polls in November, and they want to judge the president on his response to this pandemic, what is the number of dead Americans that they should tolerate, where they can argue that yes, he successfully defeated the pandemic?”

“I think you’re asking the wrong question,” McEnany replied. “The right question is …”

Lizza objected loudly to McEnany attempting to reframe the question.

“I answered your question once, but if you ask it twice it doesn’t make it any better of a question,” McEnany responded. “So I’ll respond in kind, I’ve given you one answer, I’ll continue to extrapolate upon that.”

McEnany went on to repeat her answer to Lizza.

“This president made the right choice, it was a delicate balance, and he did it exactly as he should, guided by data, and we are far below 2.2 million dead Americans because of the actions of President Trump,” she concluded.

Here’s the heated exchange between McEnany and Lizza:

Author: Carlos Garcia

Source: The Blaze: Kayleigh McEnany shuts down reporter asking how many dead Americans should be considered a coronavirus success

President Donald Trump berated CNN reporter Jim Acosta at Monday’s coronavirus media briefing for asking what the president considered to be a “nasty snarky” question.

Acosta was questioning the president’s previous statements on coronavirus, which he characterized as downplaying the crisis.

“Go ahead,” said the president to Acosta. “Let’s give it a shot.”

“Sir, what do you say to Americans who are upset with you over the way you downplayed this crisis over the last couple of months?” Acosta asked, adding statements that the president had made in the past.

“We have it very much under control in this country. The coronavirus is very much under control in the U.S.A. It’s going to disappear, it’s like a miracle, it will disappear,” Acosta quoted.

“March 4th, we have a very small number of people in this country infected,” he continued.

“March 10th. We’re prepared, we’d doing a great job with it, it will go away. Just stay calm; it will go away,” Acosta added. “What do you say to Americans who believe that you got this wrong?”

“Well, isn’t that true? It will go away, and I do want them to stay calm. And we are doing a great job. If you look at those individual statements, they’re all true. Stay calm; it will go away. You know it is going away, and it will go away. And we’re gonna have a great victory,” the president responded.

“And it’s people like you and CNN that say things like that, that it’s why people just don’t want to listen to CNN any more. You could ask a normal question. The statements I made are, I want to keep the country calm. I don’t want panic in the country,” Trump continued.

“I could cause panic, much better than even you. I could do much; it would make you look like a minor league player, but you know what, I don’t want to do that,” he added.

“I want to have our country be calm and strong and fight and win, and it will go away. And it is incredible, the job that all of these people are doing, putting them all together, the job that they’re doing. I am very proud of the job they’re doing, that [Vice President] Mike Pence is doing, that the task force has done, that Honeywell and Procter & Gamble and Mike and all of these people have done,” Trump continued.

“I’m very proud, and it’s almost a miracle, and it is, the way it’s all come together,” he concluded. “And instead of asking a nasty, snarky question like that, you should ask a real question.”

On Sunday, the president announced that social distancing guidelines would be extended through April 30, far beyond the deadline of Easter that he said was an aspirational goal.

Here’s the video of Trump berating Acosta:

Author: Carlos Garcia

Source: The Blaze: President Trump berates Jim Acosta at coronavirus briefing over ‘nasty, snarky’ question

‘They need to investigate this. They have no other alternative …’

A Ukrainian court forced the opening of an investigation into claims that former Vice President Joe Biden pressured the resignation of a special prosecutor in order to benefit his son Hunter Biden.

The Ukrainian State Bureau of Investigations confirmed the investigation into Biden’s motivation to press for the 2016 dismissal of prosecutor general Viktor Shokin, according to a report from the Washington Post.

The investigation mirrors the demand made by President Donald Trump in an infamous call made with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The accusations of a “quid pro quo” with Zelensky led to the two impeachment charges that were issued against the president by the Democrat-led House of Representatives.

“They need to investigate this. They have no other alternative,” said Shokin’s lawyer Oleksandr Teleshetsky.

“They are required to do this by the decision of the court,” he added. “If they don’t, then they violate a whole string of procedural norms.”

Shokin has claimed that his resignation was forced in order to prevent a probe into Burisma, an energy company that had appointed Hunter Biden as a board member in 2014.

Republicans in the U.S. Senate have also opened an investigation into the claims of corruption against Biden and his son.

Hunter Biden is also entangled in his own scandal having to do with fathering a child with a former exotic dancer from a Washington, D.C., club he frequented.

Biden was considered the front-runner in the Democratic presidential primary, but his campaign has performed disastrously in the first state contests, paving the way for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) to seize the lead.

Here’s more about the Biden Burisma scandal:

Author: Carlos Garcia

Source: The Blaze: Joe Biden hit with another investigation — by Ukrainian officials

Another horrible attack on MAGA supporters

Police say a 34-year-old man was arrested for allegedly assaulting a 15-year-old who was wearing a Trump campaign hat at a polling tent at his high school in New Hampshire.

Patrick Bradley was charged with simple assault and disorderly conduct by Windham Police.

The teen was wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat at the time of the assault, according to Fox News.

He was reportedly volunteering at a polling location for the New Hampshire primary at his high school, when Bradley slapped him. Two volunteers attempted to intervene, but Bradley reportedly assaulted them as well.

Police say he’s also accused of knocking over signage and attempting to knock over the tent.

The teen’s mother, Cathy Campbell, says he’s traumatized because of the altercation.

“My son stayed home from school on Tuesday for a doctor’s appointment and we drove by the high school to go vote. When we got there, we saw Donald Trump Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle, and my son was over the moon,” she said. “My son is the most patriotic kid you’d ever meet in your life.”

The campaign confirmed to Fox News that Trump Jr. and Guilfoyle were at the event.

“I was apprehensive about him wearing the MAGA hat, because we know it can provoke and we know people don’t like Trump,” Campbell explained. “But he wore the hat because he’s a proud 15-year-old and he doesn’t know what people are going to be like.”

Campbell told Fox News the jaw of another man, who intervened, was broken in the assault.

Bradley is being held on $5,000 bail.

Author: Carlos Garcia

Source: The Blaze: New Hampshire man arrested for assaulting 15-year-old Trump supporter at primary polling tent

“I’m going to interrupt you when you’re not answering the question…”

An advisor for the Joe Biden presidential campaign got into a shouting match on CNN when the host pressed her about Biden’s disappointing performance in the Iowa caucuses and whether those results were reliable.

Senior campaign advisor Symone Sanders refused to answer a question from Brianna Keilar during the fiery debate and tried to talk over her.

“I want to pin you down on this, this is very important,” said Keilar. “Yes, I already said that, the data is partial, but that said, that’s not what we heard from [Biden deputy campaign manager] Kate Bedingfield, she wasn’t saying that it was partial, she was saying that this process threw into question the legitimacy of the data as we have seen it. Is that true? Should we doubt, in your view, in the campaign’s view …”

Sanders interrupted, to which Keilar responded, “Let me finish, Symone. I let you finish, let me finish.”

“You didn’t, actually, but go ahead,” Sanders interjected.

“I did before, multiple times,” Keilar said, before asking again, “Are you saying we should doubt the numbers that we see?”

Sanders cited “failures across the process,” but did not answer directly if the results are reliable.

“I’m going to interrupt you when you’re not answering the question,” Keilar interrupted. “Is this data correct? In your view, is it correct?”

Sanders continued to speak over Keilar and grew more combative about her question, but did not answer it directly.

Biden himself admitted that the disappointing partial results from the Iowa caucuses were a “gut punch” to the campaign. The Iowa caucuses were a disaster for the state party after results were delayed, and the embarrassing debacle was compounded by public relations mismanagement.

Here’s the video of the exchange:

Author: Carlos Garcia

Source: The Blaze: VIDEO: Biden campaign advisor melts down on CNN over one simple question

The “Muslim ban” became a “travel ban” once Trump got into office

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) introduced a bill intended to remove the legal justification for a “Muslim ban,” which President Donald Trump promised during his 2016 presidential election.

Omar released a statement on Thursday about the bill that would repeal the Alien Enemies Act, which the president used as precedent to justify his travel ban.

“This outdated and xenophobic law is an offense to our values as a nation, which should stand as a refuge for those fleeing violence and persecution,” Omar said.

“It is a perfect example of outdated immigration laws that are being exploited and abused by this Administration. As the President seeks to expand the Muslim Ban, we must close policy loopholes that he can exploit to cause harm to our neighbors, our country and the values that we hold dear,” she continued.

“We must learn from historical mistakes built on fear of the other and embrace a fair and just immigration system by repealing the Alien Enemies Act,” Omar concluded.

Then-candidate Donald Trump angered many when he called for a “Muslim ban” during the 2016 presidential campaign, but once in office he rebranded his policy as a travel ban on countries that were designated as terror threats.

“Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what the hell is going on!” he said in a statement on December 2015.

“We have no choice. We have no choice. We have no choice,” he added.

Author: Carlos Garcia

Source: The Blaze: Ilhan Omar introduces bill to block Trump from implementing ‘Muslim ban’

“America’s deeply damaged judicial system…”

The Department of Justice concluded that two renewals of the FISA surveillance warrant against a former Trump campaign official were illegal, according to a report Thursday in the Wall Street Journal.

Carter Page was targeted by the FBI for surveillance during the Obama administration because of ties he had to Russia, but critics have accused the government of acting improperly and out of political motivation.

Two of the renewals of the warrant against Page were made in 2017, and the DOJ now believes there was “insufficient predication to establish probable cause.”

The admission will undoubtedly help bolster claims against former Obama officials of politically motivated abuse of power.

“Today’s unprecedented court filing represents another step on the road to recovery for America’s deeply damaged judicial system,” said Page in a statement responding to the report.

“I hope that this latest admission of guilt for these civil rights abuses by the Justice Department marks continued progress towards restoring justice and remedying these reputationally ruinous injuries,” he continued.

Much of the contention over the surveillance warrants is over whether the FBI misled the FISA court on the veracity of the evidence of Carter’s ties to Russia, most especially the infamous “Trump dossier.”

The report noted that the conclusion from the DOJ did not comment on the validity of the first two warrants of surveillance against Page.

Here’s a previous interview with Carter Page:

[H/T: Hot Air]

Author: Carlos Garcia

Source: The Blaze: DOJ concludes that two FISA surveillance renewals on Carter Page were illegal

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