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Judiciary Committee chair: ‘Very clear’ Trump obstructed justice | MSNBC

Judiciary Committee chair: ‘Very clear’ Trump obstructed justice | MSNBC

There’s a fair amount of publicly available evidence that suggests Donald Trump, among other things, obstructed justice while trying to undermine investigations into his many scandals. It’s of particular interest, however, who’s reached this conclusion about the president and his activities.

Consider this exchange from ABC News’ “This Week” yesterday between House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) and host George Stephanopoulos:

STEPHANOPOULOS: Do you think the president obstructed justice?

NADLER: Yes, I do…. It’s very clear that the president obstructed justice. It’s very clear: 1,100 times he referred to the Mueller investigation as a witch hunt, he tried to protect Flynn from being investigated by the FBI. He fired Comey in order to stop the Russian thing, as he told NBC News. He dangled pardons. He’s intimidated witnesses – in public.

That’s no small allegation under the circumstances. When Richard Nixon was driven from office, he faced five articles of impeachment, and the first was obstruction of justice. More recently, Bill Clinton was impeached on two counts, including obstruction of justice.

What’s more, Nadler isn’t just another observer: the presidential impeachment process begins in the House Judiciary Committee, which is the panel the New York Democrat leads.

It’s against this backdrop that the chairman isn’t just willing to tell a national television audience that Trump obstructed justice, he’s and his panel are also prepared to request documents from more than 60 people connected to the president and his administration “to begin investigations to present the case to the American people about obstruction of justice, corruption and abuse of power.”

In fact, there’s one thread of particular interest on which lawmakers are prepared to pull.

The House and Senate Intelligence Committees are examining whether any effort was made to influence Michael Cohen through discussions about a pardon after his home and office were searched by the FBI in April, three sources familiar with the matter told NBC News.

The inquiry about pardon discussions was first reported by The Washington Post. […]

During closed testimony last week before both committees, Cohen testified about possible pardon discussions, the sources said, but they declined to discuss the details.

Keep in mind, during last week’s congressional hearing, Cohen swore under oath that he’s aware of other crimes committed by the president that he couldn’t discuss because they’re being investigated by federal prosecutors in New York. Cohen said this following a question about conversations he had last fall with Trump.

I can’t say with any certainty what he was referring to, but it’s hardly outlandish to wonder if this refers to possible Trump conversations with Cohen about a pardon.

These birds of prey are deliberately setting forests on fire

These birds of prey are deliberately setting forests on fire

It’s pretty hot in Australia right now. A brutal heatwave that’s incinerated temperature records threatens devastating bushfires – and to make matters worse, authorities have to contend with an ancient breed of flying arsonists that may as well be miniature dragons.

A new study incorporating traditional Indigenous Australian ecological knowledge describes the largely unknown behaviour of so-called ‘firehawk raptors’ – birds that intentionally spread fire by wielding burning sticks in their talons and beaks.

These flying firestarters are spread across at least three known species – the Black Kite (Milvus migrans), Whistling Kite (Haliastur sphenurus), and Brown Falcon (Falco berigora) – but while their hell-raising may be observed in Indigenous knowledge, that’s not so elsewhere.

“Though Aboriginal rangers and others who deal with bushfires take into account the risks posed by raptors that cause controlled burns to jump across firebreaks, official skepticism about the reality of avian fire-spreading hampers effective planning for landscape management and restoration,” the international team explains in their paper.

— Bob Gosford (@bgosford) January 1, 2018

While news of aerial arsonists fire-bombing the landscape may seem surprising or even shocking, the researchers are eager to emphasise that this destructive phenomenon has actually been witnessed for untold millennia.

“We’re not discovering anything,” one of the team, geographer Mark Bonta from Penn State Altoona, told .

“Most of the data that we’ve worked with is collaborative with Aboriginal peoples… They’ve known this for probably 40,000 years or more.”

According to the team, firehawk raptors congregate in hundreds along burning fire fronts, where they will fly into active fires to pick up smouldering sticks, transporting them up to a kilometre (0.6 miles) away to regions the flames have not yet scorched.

“The imputed intent of raptors is to spread fire to unburned locations – for example, the far side of a watercourse, road, or artificial break created by firefighters – to flush out prey via flames or smoke,” the researchers write.

This behaviour, documented in interviews with the team and observed first-hand by some of the researchers, sees prey driven toward the raptors by a wall of flame, enabling them to engage in a feeding frenzy upon fleeing or scorched land animals.

The inspiration for the study came from a passage in the 1964 autobiography of Indigenous doctor and activist, Phillip Waipuldanya Roberts.

“I have seen a hawk pick up a smouldering stick in its claws and drop it in a fresh patch of dry grass half a mile away,” he said, “then wait with its mates for the mad exodus of scorched and frightened rodents and reptiles.”

Of course, as any law student knows, crimes not only entail a physical component, but a mental one.

In this case, do the birds really know what they’re doing, or are they only accidentally clutching at (burning) straws?

The researchers think the former is the case, saying accounts of multiple witnesses suggest this behaviour is not a fluke – and even more scary, it looks to be coordinated like a pack hunt.

“It’s not gratuitous,” one of the team, Australian ethnobiologist and ornithologist Bob Gosford, told in 2016.

“There’s a purpose. There’s an intent to say, okay, there are several hundred of us there, we can all get a meal.”

If the hypothesis is correct, it means we finally have confirmation of a new force in nature that can spread devastating wildfires – and local Indigenous people knew it all along.

“The birds aren’t starting fires from scratch, but it’s the next best thing,” Bonta told .

“Fire is supposedly so uniquely human.”

Fresher Democrat Ocasio-Cortez says reducing help to Israel ‘on the table’|The Times of Israel

Fresher Democrat Ocasio-Cortez says reducing help to Israel ‘on the table’|The Times of Israel

WASHINGTON– Freshman Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez lately said that cutting United States aid Israel ought to be a plan consideration on Capitol Hillside following Head of state Benjamin Netanyahu’s reelection, attracting rebuke from Jewish Democrats.
Asked on Yahoo News’ Skullduggery Podcast whether US policy towards Israel need to alter complying with the Israeli premier’s political election eve guarantee to link West Bank settlements, the New york city lawmaker claimed that must be a factor to consider. She likewise contrasted Netanyahu to US Head Of State Donald Trump, suggesting that they both shared the same tyrannical tendencies.
” I assume so,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “I think these are part of discussions we are having in our caucus, but I think what we are actually seeing is an ascent of authoritarianism across the globe. I assume that Netanyahu is a Trump-like number.”
The interview was aired Monday as well as taped a day earlier.
She said cutting army or economic aid to Israel was “definitely on the table.”
Rep. @AOC believes “Netanyahu is a Trump-like number” and also claims the reelection of the Israeli head of state becomes part of “the climb of authoritarianism across the globe” using @isikoff, @dklaidman, @skullduggerypod
— Yahoo Information (@YahooNews) April 15, 2019
” I hope to play an assisting in duty in this conversation as well as a supportive role in this discussion,” she added.
The United States supplies Israel with $3.8 billion yearly in military help, under an offer authorized by former head of state Barack Obama.
In the days prior to the political election, Netanyahu vowed on television to progressively apply Israeli sovereignty to all settlements– those in the supposed blocs, along with separated negotiations, which are house to an overall of some 400,000 Israelis– as well as added that he wanted and also intended to do so with United States authorization.
It was not right away clear whether this was a vacant project pledge aimed at ending up his right-wing base, or the intro of a policy he would really go after.
Netanyahu apparently won re-election last week as well as is commonly expected to develop a conservative union with partners that would back such a move.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses fans as election outcomes are revealed in Tel Aviv, April 09, 2019. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90).
Ocasio-Cortez claimed there were “numerous methods” to react to Netanyahu’s pledge and also shield Palestinian legal rights, consisting of through supporting a bill that would certainly require the US assistant of state to certify that United States taxpayer funds were not being made use of on the Israeli apprehension of Palestinian kids in the West Financial institution.
The legislation, which was first presented in November 2017, is called the Promoting Human Rights by End Israeli Armed Force Apprehension of Palestinian Children Act.
The Jewish Democratic Council of America criticized her for floating the suggestion of decreasing aid to Israel, informing her to speak to Jewish Democratic Residence participants with a leadership position.
” We are pleased Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez acknowledges she is NOT a leader on Israel in Congress. We recommend she involve with Dem leaders Eliot Engel, Nita Lowey, & Ted Deutch before contemplating the future of US armed forces help to Israel,” the team claimed. “US-Israel connections have to supersede politics.”.
Ocasio-Cortez has criticized Israeli plan in the past, especially its control of the West Financial institution, and has promoted for the development of a Palestinian state.
” I think absolutely in Israel’s right to exist,” she has claimed. “I am a proponent of a two-state remedy.”.
However, she also admitted she was not a specialist on the subject when asked about it by PBS in July, prior to she was chosen.
” I am not the professional on geopolitics on this problem,” she stated. “I just take a look at things through a human rights lens and also I might not use the best words … Center Eastern politics is not precisely at my kitchen table every evening.”.
Ocasio-Cortez is one of a number of fresher legislators who have actually questioned typical Democratic assistance for Israel. Analysts have additionally indicated Netanyahu’s welcome of Trump as resulting in a polarization of backing for Israel in Congress.

You Can Get Turkey-Shaped Sculpted Butter For Your Thanksgiving Table

You Can Get Turkey-Shaped Sculpted Butter For Your Thanksgiving Table

The main attraction at Thanksgiving Dinner is usually the turkey. It still is this year too but in the form of Keller’s Creamery Turkey-Shaped Butter!

Yes, You Can Get Turkey-Shaped Sculpted Butter For Your Thanksgiving Table and it’s as glorious as it sounds…

A post shared by Britt Elizondo (@britt90265) on

Each 4 ounce Turkey Shaped Butter has EIGHT tablespoons of butter, so you know, like three or four should do it for Thanksgiving. That’s based on a four member family, so plan accordingly

A post shared by Laurie Myers (@leverspaugh) on

I can’t NOT have this on my table for Thanksgiving Dinner! It will be a topic of conversation for sure.

A post shared by Magpie Ethel (@magpieethel) on

It’s almost too cute to dig into for those fluffy rolls and billowy mashed potatoes. Almost. I can see my son immediately going for the head.

A post shared by Lindsey Wood (@lindseywoodart) on

Grandma would be so proud of the attention to detail on the table! This Butter Turkey has everything from feathers, to eyes, and even to that gizzard! Keller’s got this turkey just perfect.

A post shared by Hana (Haka) Noland (@hananoland) on

This Butter Sculpture is available at most grocery stores, right where the butter is usually sold

A post shared by Marci ❤🇺🇸🏈 PATRIOTS (@marcii_dee) on

It is important to note that this is a SALTED butter. Only the good stuff here!

If you’re butter isn’t shaped like a turkey for Thanksgiving, you’re doing it wrong. #extra

— a wayward daughter carryin’ on 🌅 (@gingrsnapactual)

This turkey is so awesome he (she?) almost deserves a name. Joyce? Robert? Miguel?

Turkey shaped butter > lamb shaped butter

— Amanda 🇸🇪🦃 (@Lets_Go_Hawks)

Don’t forget those pretty Instagram pictures with Miguel the Butter Turkey.

Well that’s one less thing to do this year. Mold the butter into a turkey for my better homes and gardens entertaining. Oh wait, I don’t do that.

— Amy E. Bailey, MD FAAFP (@fammed_bailey)

Keller’s Creamery Butter Sculpture is going to be a totally welcome addition to your Thanksgiving Dinner. Pick yours up today, before its gone!

Want something else fun for the Thanksgiving feast? Try these Thanksgiving Turkey Pretzels. They are so easy to make!

Amanda Moring calls TX home, but currently resides in NC with her 2 feral children, her smokin’ hot husband, and her somewhat crazy dachshund. She enjoys watching way too much hulu, online shopping when she should be sleeping, thinking she can crochet, and traveling any chance she gets. Bring her colorful pens, blank journals, iced tea, and large sums of money; she’ll love you for life.