Displaying posts categorized under


Lawmakers Continue Push to Review Any Russia Sanctions Changes as Investigations Take Shape By Bridget Johnson see note please

Senators Huff (Graham) and Puff (McCain) emit enough hot air to warm the planet for decades…..rsk
WASHINGTON — Amid debate on Capitol Hill over what a congressional investigation into possible ties between Russian and the Trump camp should look like, a bipartisan group of House members introduced legislation today requiring lawmakers to sign off on any easing of sanctions.

The Russia Sanctions Review Act is a companion bill to legislation introduced in the upper chamber by Sens. Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), John McCain (R-Ariz.), Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), and Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio). President Trump invited Rubio, who has called for former National Security Advisor Mike Flynn to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee, to the White House for dinner tonight.

Graham said on Good Morning America that if, as first reported by the New York Times, contacts occurred between the Trump campaign and Russian intelligence officials and they’re determined to be “outside the norm, that’s not only big league bad, that’s a game changer.”

“Because if it is true, it is very very disturbing to me, and Russia needs to pay a price when it comes to interfering in our democracy and other democracies, and any Trump person who was working with the Russians in an unacceptable way also needs to pay a price,” said the senator.

The House sanctions review bill was introduced by Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Adam Smith (D-Wash.), Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.), Armed Services Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land Forces Chairman Mike Turner (R-Ohio), Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), Intelligence Subcommittee on the NSA and Cybersecurity Chairman Tom Rooney (R-Fla.), Foreign Affairs Committee Ranking Member Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), and Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.).

It’s modeled after the legislation that required a congressional vote on the Iran nuclear deal.

“Each day, we learn more about secret dealings that President Trump’s confidants have had with the Russian government,” Smith said. “We don’t yet know the full extent of these interactions, but it would raise serious questions if the administration attempted to ease the sanctions on Russia right now.”

In West Virginia, a Rising Republican Star Threatens the Nation’s Most Vulnerable Democratic Senator After years of fights with the Obama administration and the EPA, Attorney General Patrick Morrisey is well positioned to take down Senator Joe Manchin in 2018. By Jim Geraghty

About a year ago, the U.S. Supreme Court temporarily halted implementation of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan, and though the court didn’t know it at the time, this probably killed off the plan for good.

The 5–4 decision, delaying enforcement until lower courts reviewed legal challenges to the new regulations, was a decisive setback for President Obama’s signature environmental initiative, which used an “aggressive” interpretation of the EPA’s authority under the Clean Air Act in an effort to control greenhouse-gas emissions.

In September, some state attorney generals and power companies argued before the D.C. Circuit Court that the act gives the federal government too much power to enforce state laws. A decision in the case is expected within the next few months. But the outlook for the regulation is grim: Even if the court affirms the rule, President Trump has said he intends to repeal it, and his choice to run the EPA, Scott Pruitt, is one of the state AGs who challenged the plan in court. Environmentalists have already begun concluding that, “the rule will be shelved, replaced or rescinded for the near term.”

If and when the Clean Power Plan is cast aside, it will be a major victory for Patrick Morrisey, currently the attorney general of West Virginia, chairman of the Republican Attorney Generals Association, and a strong potential GOP option for 2018, when West Virginia’s Democratic senator, Joe Manchin, faces reelection.

A lot of state attorney generals opposed the plan, but it was Morrisey’s office that wrote the brief, and he was eager to lead the charge.

“The president’s power plan was such an absolute overreach, and it affects so many people’s lives,” Morrisey says, when asked about which suits in his tenure have affected people’s lives the most. “Coal matters. Energy resources matter. When you see the executive branch put a bulls-eye on your state, one of the poorest states in country, and you know people are going to lose their jobs, and it doesn’t come in a purposeful manner . . . it’s particularly callous, reckless, and illegal.”

Morrisey doesn’t look or sound like a figure primed to lead a revolution in West Virginia politics; given his résumé, one might have expected him to follow a path closer to Chris Christie’s in the Garden State. He grew up in Edison, N.J., and as a teenager he taught tennis in nearby Metuchen. He got his bachelor’s and juris doctor at Rutgers University, and even ran for Congress in New Jersey in 2000. (He finished fourth in the primary.)

But during his years working on the House Energy and Commerce Committee — serving as staff counsel on legislation covering bioterrorism and the creation of Medicare Part D, which subsidizes the cost of prescription drugs for seniors — Morrisey lived in Harper’s Ferry, W.Va., about sixty miles from Capitol Hill, and found himself increasingly enamored with his new home.

In 2012, Morrisey was active with the state GOP and tried to help the party recruit a candidate for attorney general, an office no Republican had occupied since 1933. That year the American Tort Reform Association called West Virginia a “judicial hellhole,” and placed a lot of blame at the feet of the state’s Democratic attorney general, Darrell McGraw, contending he ran “his office as if it were a private personal injury law firm and distributing litigation settlements to programs and organizations of his choosing, rather than the state and its taxpayers.” Morrissey was particularly irked that McGraw had refused to join other state attorney generals in challenging Obamacare. When no other Republican was willing to run, Morrisey jumped in himself.

McGraw had held the state attorney general’s office since 1992, but age, the electorate’s appetite for change, and its alienation from the Obama-dominated modern Democratic party caught up with him. Campaigning resolutely against Obamacare, Morrisey won in a year when Democrats carried every other statewide office.

It didn’t take long for Morrisey to establish himself as one of the state attorneys general most inclined to file suit against the federal government.

He joined a challenge to the Obama administration’s interpretation of the Gun Control Act of 1968 as prohibiting so-called straw purchases of a gun even when the true buyer could buy the gun lawfully. In 2014, the Supreme Court ruled 5–4 in favor of the administration.

In October of the same year, he filed a lawsuit against the Department of Health and Human Services, contending the department did not have the authority to suspend Obamacare’s insurance mandate and accusing President Obama of “cherry-picking which laws his Administration will enforce.” In July 2016, the D.C. circuit court ruled that West Virginia had not suffered an injury in fact and lacked standing.

Last year, he joined a suit against the Obama administration over its directive to school districts on accommodating transgender students’ access to bathrooms and locker rooms, contending the administration “conspired to turn workplaces and educational settings across the country into laboratories for a massive social experiment.” The Supreme Court is expected to hear oral arguments in that case in March.

Morrisey has had mixed success with these and other lawsuits — the Clean Power Plan suit, for example, was one of 14 cases he’s brought against the EPA — but his losses haven’t seemed to hurt his reputation much in West Virginia.

“We’ve had a good batting average because we’ve taken the time to do this the right way,” Morrisey says.

West Virginia voters seem pleased; in November, they reelected Morrisey 51 percent to 41 percent. During the campaign, Democrats tried to paint him as too cozy with big drug companies, pointing to his past work at the Washington law firm of King & Spalding, his lucrative work lobbying for a pharmaceutical industry trade group, and numerous donations to his campaign from drug companies, their law firms, and their PACs.

One reason this criticism didn’t work as well as Democrats hoped was Morrisey’s numerous lawsuits against pharmaceutical companies. In court, he has contended that the industry recklessly provided massive quantities of painkillers to small-town pharmacies and doctors, fueling the state’s severe opioid-addiction crisis. By January, his office had obtained more than $47 million in settlements from pharmaceutical companies to resolve the allegations. The settlement money will go to drug-abuse prevention and treatment programs.

“Our plan [for addressing opioid addiction] includes an aggressive education component,” Morrisey says. “You have to educate people at an early age.”

In January, Morrissey’s office won a fight to sue McKesson Corp., the nation’s largest wholesale drug distributor, in state court, contending the company failed to develop an adequate system to identify suspicious drug orders. The company shipped more than 100 million doses of painkillers such as hydrocodone and oxycodone to West Virginia —a state with fewer than 2 million people — in a five-year period.

His office isn’t just pursuing high-dollar settlements from the biggest fish, either. In December, he filed suit against Larry’s Drive-In Pharmacy in Madison, W.Va., alleging the pharmacy failed to identify suspicious prescriptions. The pharmacy dispensed nearly 10 million doses of prescription painkillers over eleven years — in a county of fewer than 25,000 people.

The other traditional attack against a Republican candidate is to paint him as a friend to the wealthy and powerful, helping them kick the little guy. But as attorney general, Morrisey’s gone toe-to-toe with some of the state’s biggest employers when he’s convinced they’re on the wrong side of the law.

Frontier Communications is the biggest Internet provider in the state, and when its customers claimed their connection was far slower than advertised, Morrisey’s office negotiated what a press release called “one of the largest consumer protection settlements in the state’s history,” as Frontier agreed to put an additional $150 million into infrastructure improvements throughout West Virginia while reducing monthly customer bills by $10 million.

Morrisey’s office also filed a lawsuit against the state’s largest residential landlord, Metro Property Management, alleging that the company violated the state’s consumer-protection law by charging tenants a non-refundable fee, in addition to the standard damage deposit, to prepare each residence for its next tenant.

One of Morrisey’s more recent targets is Mylan, the increasingly infamous maker of the EpiPen, a life-saving device used to treat severe allergic reactions. The company came under intense public criticism last year after reports that it had raised the base price of an EpiPen two-pack 600 percent since 2009. Republicans point out with relish that Mylan’s chief executive, Heather Bresch, is Manchin’s daughter. Bresch told a hostile House of Representatives committee that the price increase was “fair” and that the company only makes a profit of $100 per two-pack.

In September, Morrisey announced that his office is looking into whether Mylan violated antitrust laws or defrauded the state’s Medicaid program. In November, after the company announced it had reached a $465 million settlement with the federal government to resolve allegations that it had shortchanged the Medicaid system, Morrisey publicly denounced the proposed resolution as a “sweetheart deal” and “a losing proposition for taxpayers who fund Medicaid and the countless families who rely on EpiPen and are beholden to Mylan’s skyrocketing greed.” Strangely, after the company’s announcement, the federal government said it hadn’t signed on to any settlement, and as of January, the outgoing head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Andrew Slavit, denied the existence of an agreement.

It’s quite possible that Morrisey’s name will be taken in vain around the Manchin family dinner table more often in the coming years. For now, he is noncommittal about any potential 2018 run. But it doesn’t take too much to get him to analyze the difficult spot his potential Democratic foe is in.

“I have respect for Senator Manchin as a politician and a person,” Morrisey says. “He is a very talented politician who has been working hard to shift his positions, to move away from a position of a strong public endorsement of Hillary Clinton, who won less than 27 percent in this state. The national Democratic party’s values do not reflect West Virginia values, and it is an exceedingly difficult challenge to walk that line.”

Precisely because of his predicament, Manchin has quickly become one of the most fascinating Democrats to watch in Washington: Facing reelection in perhaps the most pro-Trump state in the nation, he must decide where to work with the new administration and where to oppose it. He voted to confirm Jeff Sessions as U.S. attorney general and applauded Trump’s executive order on the Keystone Pipeline, but joined fellow Democrats in a protest against Trump’s executive order on immigration and refugees at the Supreme Court last month and voted against Tom Price as HHS Secretary and Betsy DeVos as Education Secretary.

Over the next two years, it will be interesting to see if he takes a softer stance on Trump with a potential challenge from Morrisey lurking.

— Jim Geraghty is National Review’s senior political correspondent.

Trump argument bolstered: Clinton could have received 800,000 votes from noncitizens By Rowan Scarborough –

Hillary Clinton garnered more than 800,000 votes from noncitizens on Nov. 8, an approximation far short of President Trump’s estimate of up to 5 million illegal voters but supportive of his charges of fraud.

Political scientist Jesse Richman of Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, has worked with colleagues to produce groundbreaking research on noncitizen voting, and this week he posted a blog in response to Mr. Trump’s assertion.

Based on national polling by a consortium of universities, a report by Mr. Richman said 6.4 percent of the estimated 20 million adult noncitizens in the U.S. voted in November. He extrapolated that that percentage would have added 834,381 net votes for Mrs. Clinton, who received about 2.8 million more votes than Mr. Trump.

Mr. Richman calculated that Mrs. Clinton would have collected 81 percent of noncitizen votes.

“Is it plausible that non-citizen votes added to Clinton’s margin? Yes,” Mr. Richman wrote. “Is it plausible that non-citizen votes account for the entire nation-wide popular vote margin held by Clinton? Not at all.”

Still, the finding is significant because it means noncitizens may have helped Mrs. Clinton carry a state or finish better than she otherwise would have.

Mr. Trump’s unverified accusation to congressional leaders this week, as reported by The Washington Post, has sent the issue skyward.

He apparently was referring to all types of fraud, such as the “dead” voting or multiple votes from the same person. But the thrust of his estimate appears to be that illegal immigrants and noncitizens carried the popular vote.

J Street’s dead end By Gregg Roman

At the end of 2017, the far-left Jewish advocacy group J Street will celebrate its 10th anniversary. At its inception, J Street promised to be the first political movement “to explicitly promote American leadership to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.” However, an objective summary of the organization’s progress toward accomplishing this goal results in abject and damning failure.

In fact, the circumstances couldn’t have been more amenable toward J Street’s lofty goal. Within 14 months of J Street’s inception, Barack Obamaswept to power in elections that also left both houses of Congress controlled by Democrats.

As president, Obama’s approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was groundbreaking in many ways, deviating from the positions and tone of his predecessors, both Republican and Democrat. J Street backed this shift with political cover, campaign donations and organizational unanimity, providing a convenient panacea to American Jewish community outrage over Obama’s maneuvers.

The fledgling J Street found itself at the top table with veteran Jewish and pro-Israel organizations at the White House, with almost unprecedented access during Obama’s two terms.

It wasn’t merely a spectator: J Street saw itself as a vital part of the administration’s strategy and policy on Israel and the peace process. It prided itself on the puppeteer role it played in defending the White House or pushing its policy platform.

“We were the blocking-back, clearing space for the quarterback to do what we wanted him to do,” said J Street’s president, Jeremy Ben-Ami, in 2011. Ben-Ami added, Obama “hasn’t been able to push as aggressively as we would like,” and J Street has “switched from being out front and clearing the way, to pushing him to do something more.”

Something more turned out to be a lot less.

During the full eight years of the Obama administration, which set as one of its foreign policy goals a peaceful resolution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas never sat in the same room for more than a few hours in total.

While Netanyahu constantly repeated that he was willing to meet with the Palestinian leader at any place at any time, with no preconditions, Abbas made a series of impossible preconditions that pushed meaningful negotiations further and further away. J Street ended up blamingNetanyahu for Abbas’s intransigence.

Remembering Rich Blumenthal’s Vietnam Deception Senate smear never paid a price for claiming he served. Lloyd Billingsley

​In the confirmation hearings for Jeff Sessions, president-elect Donald Trump’s choice for Attorney General, Senator Richard Blumenthal, Connecticut Democrat, proceeded as though David Horowitz had been the AG choice.

David Horowitz was not present but Blumenthal cited his statements that all the major Muslim organizations are connected to the Muslim Brotherhood, that 80 percent of the mosques in America are filled with hate against Jews, and that too many blacks are in prison because too many blacks commit crimes.

Senator Blumenthal, an attorney, had not taken the trouble to investigate these statements, which are all true and accurate. Instead he called them “apparently racist” and demanded that Jeff Sessions denounce David Horowitz and give back an award he had received from the David Horowitz Freedom Center.

By any standard, this was the most loathsome and gutless performance many had seen since the hearings for Clarence Thomas and Robert Bork, where smear artists Howard Metzenbaum (D-Ohio) and Ted Kennedy (D-Mass) respectively held forth. In the Sessions hearings it failed to emerge that Blumenthal, 70, bears a history of problems with truth and courage alike.

“Candidate’s Words on Vietnam Service Differ from History,” ran the New York Times headline on a May 17, 2010 article by Raymond Hernandez. Blumenthal, then Connecticut Attorney General and running for the U.S. Senate seated vacated by Christopher Dodd, had recently appeared at a ceremony in Norwalk honoring veterans. There he proclaimed, “We have learned something important since the days that I served in Vietnam.” There was one problem, Hernandez noted. The aspiring Senator “never served in Vietnam.”

According to records obtained by Hernandez and his colleagues Barclay Walsh, Kitty Bennett and Bonnie Kavoussi, Blumenthal “obtained at least five military deferments from 1965 to 1970 and took repeated steps that enabled him to avoid going to war.”

These deferments cleared the way for Blumenthal, son of a wealthy New York businessman, to complete studies at Harvard, serve as a special assistant to Washington Post publisher Katherine Graham, and “ultimately take a job in the Nixon White House.”

Black Klansmen, fascist follicles By Roger Franklin

In the Age and Sydney Morning Herald today, remaining readers of those publications will have preconceptions further confirmed that Donald Trump is a Hitlerian svengali whose election has invited the brown-shirted “far right” to goose-step through the corridors of power. The report, picked up from the Washington Post, begins by noting that “a small but determined” band of neo-Nazis in Michigan has stopped flaunting swastikas in an effort to go “more mainstream”. This in turn prompts a journalistic round-up of the Left’s handy and standard boogeymen — the Klan, David Duke, backwoods militias and, if you can believe it, people who wear their hair “in an undercut style once popular among the Hitler Youth”.

Nazi haircuts! What more proof could anyone demand?

Need it be said that the story is piffle, that it is part of an emerging narrative intent on framing the next four years as a period that will see the politically correct tirelessly encouraged to denounce tax cuts and any easing of the regulatory straitjacket as the moral equivalents of invading Poland? You would need to be supremely dim to give such a slur any credence, which explains why Fairfax editors published it.

Trouble is, the jackbooted legions whose hatred is said be soiling America’s fruited plain are an uncooperative lot, as Fairfax US correspondent Paul McGeough will have to admit if he ever gets around to correcting a pre-election report that appeared beneath his byline on November 3. The multi-Walkley winner informed his readers:

“Vote Trump” was spray-painted on the ruins of Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church in Greenville, 160 kilometres north-west of Jackson, overnight on Tuesday. Local fire chief Ruben Brown said the church was badly damaged but no injuries have been reported.

Coinciding with the Ku Klux Klan’s endorsement of Donald Trump in a campaign that has become overtly racist, the attack kindles fears of a return to the 1960s civil rights unrest, when southern black churches were often torched or bombed by white supremacists.

It’s a minor quibble that McGeough preferred to generalise about “white supremacists”, rather than identify the church-burners of long ago for the segregationist Southern Democrats they really were. So let that omission pass and focus instead on the real problem with his bid to tie Trump to the Klan: it wasn’t white men in pointy hoods who burnt that Mississippi church. According to the state police, it was a black congregant — that’s his mugshot atop this post — who set the fire, presumably in hope of prompting some pro-Clinton votes and publicity.

Mississippi Department of Public Safety spokesman Warren Strain says Andrew McClinton of Leland, Mississippi, who is African-American, is charged with first-degree arson of a place of worship.

It would be nice to think McGeough’s editors will publish a retraction, that they are keen to set the record straight. And while they’re at it, they might take a close look at another of his dispatches which alleged a wave of attacks by racists celebrating Trump’s victory. Yes, there have been many reports of Trump-inspired racist assaults — and it seems, as even the Washington Post concedes, more than a few were false-flag hoaxes.

The Animal Cunning and Instinct of Donald Trump He grasped that what voters cared about were the very issues politicos were disdainfully ignoring. By Victor Davis Hanson

The American middle classes, the Chinese, and Vladimir Putin have never been convinced that Ivy League degrees, vast Washington experience, and cultural sophistication necessarily translate into national wisdom. Trump instead relies more on instinct and operates from cunning — and we will soon see whether we should redefine “wisdom.”

But for now, for example, we have never heard a presidential candidate say such a thing as “We love our miners” — not “we like” miners, but “we love” them. And not just any miners, but “our” miners, as if, like “our vets,” the working people of our moribund economic regions were unique and exceptional people, neither clingers nor irredeemables. In Trump’s gut formulation, miners certainly did not deserve “to be put out of business” by Hillary Clinton, as if they were little more than the necessary casualties of the war against global warming. For Trump, miners were not the human equivalent of the 4,200 bald eagles that the Obama administration recently assured the wind turbine industry can be shredded for the greater good of alternate energy and green profiteering.

In other words, Trump instinctively saw the miners of West Virginia — and by extension the working-class populations of states such as Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Ohio — as emblematic of the forgotten man, in a way few of his Republican rivals, much less Hilary Clinton, grasped.

No other candidate talked as constantly about jobs, “fair” trade, illegal immigration, and political correctness — dead issues to most other pollsters and politicos. Rivals, Democratic and Republican alike, had bought into the electoral matrix of Barack Obama: slicing the electorate into identity-politics groups and arousing them to register and vote in record numbers against “them” — a fossilized, supposedly crude, illiberal, and soon-to-be-displaced white working class.

For Democrats that meant transferring intact Obama’s record numbers of minority voters to a 68-year-old multimillionaire white woman; for Republicans, it meant pandering with a kinder, softer but still divisive identity-politics message. Trump instinctively saw a different demographic. And even among minority groups, he detected a rising distaste for being patronized, especially by white, nasal-droning, elite pajama-boy nerds whose loud progressivism did not disguise their grating condescension.

The Left’s never-ending war With their policies rejected by voters, the purpose of the Left isn’t to govern. It is to render their societies ungovernable. Caroline Glick

The push among the American Left to discredit the results of last month’s presidential election entered a new phase last Friday with the White House’s announcement that outgoing US President Barack Obama has ordered US intelligence agencies to review evidence of Russian hacking in last month’s elections on behalf of President-elect Donald Trump.

The investigation itself is unlikely to lead to any conclusive results. The FBI, which is responsible for carrying out this sort of investigation, saw no evidence that Russian hacking was aimed specifically at assisting Trump’s campaign against Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

Despite this, Obama has chosen to make the probe the top priority of US intelligence agencies.

He urged them to finish their investigation before he leaves office. And, according to his deputy press secretary Eric Schultz, he aims to publicize as many the findings as he can.

Friday afternoon, Schultz said, “We’re going to make public as much as we can. As you can imagine, something like this might include sensitive and even classified information. When that report is submitted, we’re going to take a look. We want to brief Congress and the relevant stakeholders, possibly state directors.”

Democratic Senator Ron Wyden responded positively to Schultz’s statement. “This is good news,” he said. “Declassifying and releasing information about the Russian government and the US election, and doing so quickly, must be a priority.”

But why disclose the findings of an inconclusive investigation? There is only one reason to do so: to delegitimize the election results and so make the Trump administration radioactive for Democrats.

Once a pall of suspicion is cast over the legitimacy of Trump’s presidency by the outgoing Democratic White House, no self-respecting Democrat with a survival instinct will be willing to cooperate with the Trump administration.

Russian Hacking Hysteria The Left can’t stop blaming the vast Russian conspiracy.Matthew Vadum

All this talk of a vast Russian conspiracy to hack U.S. computer networks to put Donald Trump in the White House is difficult to believe.

It may turn out to be true that somebody either hacked the Democratic National Committee or leaked emails from inside the DNC to expose Democrats’ dirty tricks against the Trump campaign. Among those illicit operations were the effort to foment violence at Trump campaign rallies, rigging the Democrat primaries against Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), and the leaking of debate questions by then-CNN pundit and now acting DNC chairman Donna Brazile.

The Left’s immediate goal, as it was during and after the bitter 36-day-long Bush versus Gore recent in Florida in 2000, is working toward a broader narrative. Left-wingers are laboring to delegitimize the incoming president because he is a Republican. Democracy isn’t working properly if it puts non-leftists in power, left-wingers reason, so all GOP chief executives must be vigorously opposed.

Commie agitprop director Michael Moore is encouraging angry left-wing mobs to come to Washington, D.C., and riot in the streets of the nation’s capital on Inauguration Day in an effort to prevent or at least cast a shadow over Trump’s assumption of the powers of the presidency. The idea is to do as much damage as possible to Trump before he even gets sworn in.

Selective recounts in states Trump won aren’t yielding election-changing results so now Electoral College members pledged to vote for Trump are being besieged by angry radicals who are threatening them with death if they vote for Trump on the appointed day Dec. 19. Corrupt partisan shills like Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, John Podesta, former head of the George Soros-funded Center for American Progress, are demanding that presidential electors be burdened with unprecedented, utterly inappropriate intelligence briefings before they vote.

Left-wing Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn.) openly embraces an Electoral College coup against Trump, calling him a “potentially dangerous president” who is “not only unqualified to be president, he’s a danger to the republic.”

After recounts and threatening electors, paranoid fear-mongering about Russia is the Left’s fallback position.

And more than a few Republicans are playing along with the Left.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) both lined up behind the deeply dysfunctional Central Intelligence Agency, which is home to plenty of left-wing Democrats, chief among them being CIA Director John Brennan. The ultra-politically correct Brennan, who steadfastly covers up for Islamofascism, has admitted to voting for the Communist Party’s presidential candidate in 1976, an acknowledgement that ought to have instantly and permanently disqualified him as CIA chief.

Peter Smith: The Voice of Flyover Country

Hillary Clinton won the popular vote and should be president, so goes the Democrats’ lament. True, but those votes came from just two states very much out of step with the rest of the US. In conceiving the Electoral College, America’s Founding Fathers knew what they were doing.
Donald Trump won 306 Electoral College votes to Hillary Clinton’s 232. Trump calls it a landslide. That is perhaps going a little far too far I think. Nonetheless, the US electoral map is a very Republican red apart from particulars areas of the West and East coasts. There hangs a tale.

How many times have we heard it? Clinton won the popular vote. The latest figure is by 2.6 million. You can find these updated figures on Dave Leip’s Atlas of US presidential elections. At the latest count — apparently it isn’t quite all done — Clinton obtained 65.54 million (48%) votes to Donald Trump’s 62.86 million (46%). It seems like an impressive margin of the popular vote went to Clinton. Certainly people like Michael Moore find it impressive. And it is not hard to hear it being repeated ad nauseam by Democrat commentators on US TV.

The accompanying conclusion on the part of Democrats is that Trump’s mandate is problematic. Accordingly, so it goes, Clinton has a right to feel hard done by and to keep on whining about Russian hackers and fake news stories queering the pitch. And, through surrogates, fund Jill Stein’s disingenuous recount efforts in States narrowly won by Trump, ostensibly to verify voting integrity. Meanwhile, she is not contesting New Hampshire won much more narrowly by Clinton; by less than 3000 votes.

I took the popular vote at face value. The trick is to win 270 or more Electoral College votes, not the popular vote, and losing the popular vote and winning an election is not unknown. But, hold on, I thought, this winning margin of the popular vote for a losing candidate is extraordinary.

It is extraordinary. The extraordinary part of it is that if you take out California, which Clinton won by 4.27 million votes, Trump wins the popular national vote by about 1.6 million. In Los Angeles alone Clinton won the popular vote by 1.7 million. If you take out New York, as well as California, Trump wins the popular vote by a margin over three million.

I’m not sure what this all means. But it seems significant enough for commentators to at least remark on the remarkable fact that without California, never mind New York, Trump wins the popular vote very handily. In fact, I have not heard this mentioned during all of the times I have heard the popular-vote narrative being played out – even, so far, on Fox News.

Now I know Californians are Americans and deserve to be counted. But it is a strange business when a little over 4% of the land mass contains sufficient numbers of Democrat supporters to outweigh the significant weight of Republican support living in the other 95% plus of the country. It is a powerful endorsement of the Electoral College system.

Perhaps the Founding Fathers envisaged the need to protect American values from the future growth of populous coastal progressive enclaves. Though, it is hard to imagine that they could ever envisage the culturally destructive mindset of modern progressives. I live now and can’t begin to grasp it.

Let me see. Here is a taste. It starts with an assumption that we can have things we can’t collectively afford if only we tax the rich. That the most successful, free and prosperous nation in the history of mankind is irredeemably wicked. That white supremacism is rampant. That white people disagreeing with that nonsensical delusion are racist. That people who want to control borders are racist. That people who want to deport felons among illegal migrants are racist. That people who support cops defending themselves against black thugs are racist. That people fearful of Islamic supremacism are Islamophobic. That people who value unborn life are misogynistic. That people who oppose gay marriage are homophobic.