President Barack Obama, Supporters Push Policies and Appointments Before Trump Takes Over 

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President Barack Obama is trying to put the people and policies in place that he wants to outlast his presidency in the final weeks before Donald Trump takes over. But his supporters want more, way more.

Since Election Day, President Barack Obama has appointed 56 people to boards, commissions and offices in the hopes that they remain in those posts for years to come.

He has reduced the prison sentences of 79 federal inmates. He has handed out the nation’s highest civilian honor to 21 people who he said personally made an impact on his life.

[21 recipients honored with Presidential Medal of Freedom]

President Obama honored 21 recipients during his last Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony at the White House Tuesday. “Everybody on this stage has touched me in a very powerful, very personal way,” Obama said. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Elouise Cobell, Ellen

Obama Swoops Into Afghanistan On Bin Laden Death Anniversary

And he has churned out rules, regulations and policies several times a week.

Obama is trying to put the people and policies in place that he wants to outlast his presidency in the final weeks before Donald Trump takes over. And his supporters want more, way more.

[Read more here, at McClatchy DC]

Every president tries to push through last-minute policies before their time in office comes to a close. But this year has a more frantic feel as special interest groups push Obama to do more, not just because the president-elect is of a different party but because few people know what he will do.

“People are, as you can imagine, they are getting quite desperate,” said Rena Steinzor, a member of the Center for Progressive Reform, a liberal advocacy group, who is pressing Obama to act. “Filling boards and doing whatever he can to establish protections that Trump would have to unwind is a good strategy.”

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With six weeks remaining, their to-do list for Obama is long:

They want him to issue an executive order requiring federal contractors to disclose their political donations. They want him to pardon immigrants in the country illegally and direct federal employees to quickly process applications for immigrants who came into the United States illegally as children. And they want him to make good on his campaign pledge to close the prison for suspected terrorists at Guantánamo Bay.

[Read the full story here, at McClatchy DC]

Time is running out for President Obama to fulfill his promise to close Guantánamo. He now has less than 50 days to finish the job and close the door or he risks opening the floodgates for President-elect Trump. Amnesty International USA’s Security & Human Rights Program Senior Campaigner Elizabeth Beavers

No one disputes that Obama has the authority to do what he is doing, but Trump supporters don’t think he should be doing them anyway. Read the rest of this entry »


Barack Obama Second Term: A Complete Failure

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There’s no other way to describe it.

Jim Geraghtygeraghty writes: Every December, Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post picks the biggest political loser of the past year.

In 2013, Cillizza’s selection was Barack Obama. He cited the botched rollout of Healthcare.gov, the NSA domestic-surveillance Tall-censorship-campusscandal, the IRS’s targeting of tea-party groups, and the continuing questions about the administration’s actions before, during, and after the attack on Americans in Benghazi.

“These are strenuous efforts to avoid the obvious: Obama’s ideas didn’t work. He failed to deliver what he promised.”

In 2014, Cillizza’s selection was Obama, again. The midterm elections went abysmally for Democrats, the threat of ISIS became much clearer, Russia moved into Ukraine, and former CIA director and secretary of defense Leon Panetta painted an unflattering portrait of the president’s leadership in his memoirs.

[Read the full story here, at National Review]

In 2015, Cillizza picked two co-“winners,” Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton. The reasons were obvious. By December 2015, it was clear Bush’s odds of winning the nomination were small and shrinking quickly. Clinton, meanwhile, looked likely to emerge bloodied from the Democratic primaries after a tougher-than-expected fight with Bernie Sanders.

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“President Obama’s second term has been a terrible failure for the country. A nation that is pleased with the status quo — a nation that feels prosperous, safe, and confident about the future — doesn’t choose to roll the dice with Donald Trump.”

This year, Cillizza assessed the surprising post-election political landscape and selected “The Democrats”:

The Democrats may be effectively locked out of power in all three branches of government for years. At the state level, after last month’s hillary-tallelections, they’ll control only 16 governorships and 13 legislatures.

[Read more here, at The Washington Post]

This year, punctuated by Hillary Clinton’s loss, exposed the remarkably shallow depth of the Democratic bench. The size of the Republican primary field — for which the GOP was relentlessly mocked — was also a sign of the party’s health up and down the ballot. Democrats simply didn’t have the political talent to put forward 17 candidates (or even seven). That’s partly because there’s been limited opportunity to move up in the leadership ranks. Pelosi (Calif.) and Reps. Steny H. Hoyer (Md.) and James E. Clyburn (S.C) have had a death grip on the party’s top congressional slots for a very long time. It’s also partly because the Democratic farm system is hurting.

Lined up one after another, Cillizza’s picks create a broader narrative: President Obama’s second term has been a terrible failure for the country. A nation that is pleased with the status quo — a nation that feels prosperous, safe, and confident about the future — doesn’t choose to roll the dice with Donald Trump.

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Jonathan Chait’s ill-timed forthcoming book argues that “in the eyes of history, Barack Obama will be viewed as one of America’s best and most accomplished presidents.” Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] Jill Stein: People Walk Around With Floppy Disks to Hack Voter Machines 

New Hampshire Voters Head To The Polls For State's Primary

 


FAIL: PRWeek’s ‘Survey’ of 22 PR Pros Found ZERO Predictions for Trump

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Craig Bannister writes: The pre-election predictions of communications professionals surveyed by PRWeek proved to be unanimously – and embarrassingly – wrong. Could every PR executive in the U.S. have been so off, or was this a case of media bias in choosing the “experts?”

On Nov. 8, PRWeek published “They’re with her: PR execs predict a resounding Clinton victory,” in which reported the pre-election predictions of 22 communications professional – not one of whom predicted Donald Trump would win the election. Not only were their predictions wrong, they were embarrassingly wrong, with some apparently more influenced by personal opinion than science.

As a result of the overwhelming inaccuracy of the experts surveyed, PRWeek’s “biggest lesson” for PR executives proved wrong:

“The greatest irony here and the biggest lesson for communications professionals: Donald Trump may lose tomorrow because millions of Latino, Muslim, and women voters he vilified – Democrats and Republicans among them—help push Hillary to victory.”

[Read the full story here, at MRCTV]

No, the “greatest irony here” is that those who make a living as barometers, and drivers, of public opinion could all be so far off.

Here are ten of their most outrageously bad predictions – and the wimpiest one.

Most Wildly Inaccurate:

“I believe that my former boss Hillary Clinton will make history and become the first woman POTUS and she will win by an Electoral College landslide of 322 to 216. That includes Florida, Nevada, and North Carolina.” – Kris Balderston, president of global public affairs and strategic engagement, FleishmanHillard

So, PRWeek surveyed a former Clinton employee, who picked Clinton. And, while Clinton did take Nevada’s six electoral votes, she lost 29 in Florida and 15 in North Carolina.

“There is no doubt in my mind that Hillary Clinton will be our next leader and that the Democrats will take back the Senate. My prediction is that we will be awed by the numbers.” – David Landis, president, Landis Communications Read the rest of this entry »


[AUDIO] Tucker Carlson Busts Newsweek’s Incredible ‘Madam President’ Content

CARLSON: Thank you. So, it what — Look, I mean everyone makes screwups like this, and I’m not here to mock you for that. It’s the content of it that was unbelievable. And it’s so unbelievable actually that I have got to put it on the screen. I want to read part of the introduction to the “Madam President” edition. It describes this:

… “as the tone of the election grew darker and more bizarre by the day, President-Elect Hillary Clinton ‘went high’ when her opponent and supporters went even lower.”

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“’Fear and hate-based conservatism.’ It’s breathless. It’s not even hagiographic. It’s pornographic. It’s Soviet in its devotion to Hillary Clinton. Who wrote this?”

“No stranger to trudging through the mire of misogyny in her career as First Lady, Senator, and Secretary of State, President Clinton managed to push for an issues-based campaign, even as a handful of Trump’s deplorable supporters, seeing the wide margin she held among female voters, called for repealing the 19th Amendment.”

It goes on and on. Read the rest of this entry »


Chris Wallace Grills Jill Stein: Fox News Sunday Full Interview

Dr Jill Stein Appeared on Fox New Sunday with Chris Wallace. Wallace immediately grills Jill Stein On the recount efforts asking “why not New Hampshire”. Why Only States that Clinton lost? Green Party candidate Jill Stein and Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace engaged in a pretty combative exchange today while discussing Stein’s recount efforts, with Wallace trying to get Stein to admit that there have been no recounts that have switched tens of thousands of votes.

Steven Crowder writes:

“At the end of the day, Jill Stein isn’t changing any hearts or minds over this. The longer this charade of a ‘recount’ continues, the more ridiculous leftists are going to look in regard to the election. Which is hard to do. At this point, Democrats are pulling a Usain Bolt in that they’re only breaking their own records. In this case, records in national embarrassment. They’ve already racked up the top ten highest scores. Looks like Stein wants to go for an even twenty.”

[more here – Chris Wallace Absolutely Roasts Jill Stein on Her Recount Scam]

The interview started with Wallace wanting to know why Stein hadn’t requested a recount in New Hampshire even though Hillary Clinton carried that state by a much more narrow margin than the three states she did request recounts in. Stein explained that it was because the deadline had passed for New Hampshire.

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After Stein noted that she would look to expand the recounts to other states if they see a systemic issue regarding machine error and hacking, Wallace asked Stein if she knew the highest number of votes that had been switched via a recount. When she brought up a situation with Toledo in 2004 where 90,000 votes were erroneously marked blank — she has brought this up before — Wallace explained that officially, the biggest change had been roughly 1200 during the 2000 Florida recount in that year’s presidential election. ‘There’s not a chance in the world here, Dr. Stein, that the vote is going to change in those three states,” Wallace exclaimed, pointing out the margin in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. Read the rest of this entry »


Noonan: What Comes After the Uprising

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President-elect Trump needs to reassure the country, including those who opposed him.

Sometimes there comes a crack in Time itself.

Sometimes the earth is torn by something blind. . . .

Call it the mores, call it God or Fate . . .

That force exists and moves.

And when it moves

It will employ a hard and actual stone

To batter into bits an actual wall

And change the actual scheme of things.

— Stephen Vincent Benét,

“ John Brown’s Body”

Time for an Intervention - Peggy Noonan's Blog - WSJPeggy Noonan writes: Hand it to him, the hard and actual stone who changed the actual scheme.

There were actually many stones, some 60 million, but Donald Trump did it, battering not just the famous blue wall but a wall of elites and establishments and their expectations.

“It was a natural, self-driven eruption. Which makes it all the more impressive and moving. And it somehow makes it more beautiful that few saw it coming.”

The moment for me that will never be forgotten:

I was in a busy network green room late on election night. We were scrolling down, noting margins in various battlegrounds, looking for something definitive. Then someone read aloud from his phone: “AP calls it—Donald Trump elected president of the United States.” There was quiet for just a moment. I wrote in my notes “2:32 a.m., 11/9/16.” Soon we went into the newsroom for a panel, and I said what I thought, again from my notes: “We have witnessed something epochal and grave. It is the beginning of a new era whose shape and form are not clear, whose personnel and exact direction are unknown. But something huge and incalculable has occurred. God bless our beloved country.”

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“The previous 16 months were, for the Trump campaign, the victory project. What has to begin now is the reassurance project.”

I am not one of those who knew how the evening would end. I saw Hillary Clinton winning for all the usual reasons. Now the usual reasons are pretty much out the window.

But some things should be said:

First, our democratic republic is vibrant and alive. It is not resigned. It is still capable of delivering a result so confounding it knocks you into the next room.

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Nobody rigged this. Nobody hacked it. There weren’t brawls at polling places, there was kindness and civility. At the 92nd Street Y I got to embrace three neighbors. All this in a highly charged, highly dramatic and divisive election. We did our democratic work and then went home. It all worked.

[Read the full story here, at WSJ]

Second, Donald Trump said he had a movement and he did. This is how you know. His presidential campaign was bad—disorganized, unprofessional, chaotic, ad hoc. There was no state-of-the-art get-out-the-vote effort—his voters got themselves out. There was no high-class, high-tech identifying of supporters—they identified themselves. They weren’t swayed by the barrage of brilliantly produced ads—those ads hardly materialized. This was not a triumph of modern campaign modes and ways. The people did this. As individuals within a movement.

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“Nobody rigged this. Nobody hacked it. There weren’t brawls at polling places, there was kindness and civility. At the 92nd Street Y I got to embrace three neighbors. All this in a highly charged, highly dramatic and divisive election. We did our democratic work and then went home. It all worked.”

It was a natural, self-driven eruption. Which makes it all the more impressive and moving. And it somehow makes it more beautiful that few saw it coming. Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] Trump & Clinton Were Very Convincing…on How Lousy the Other One Is

In last night’s debate, was there a positive case for Hillary being fit for the White House? Are there liberal-huhTrump policies that are gonna turn this mother around? Of course not. What were you even thinking.

Let’s pretend for a moment that the biggest headlines out of Sunday night’s presidential debate had nothing to do with sexual assault allegations, or non-handshakes, or threats to jail political oponents—but instead were about policy.

In that bizarre alternative universe, what could we actually learn? Last night we learned that the two exhausted political parties have nothing much left to offer except critiques about how lousy the other one is.Hosted by Matt Welch; camera and editing by Jim Epstein.


[VIDEO] The First Presidential Debate in 3 Minutes

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump met for the first presidential debate last night at Hofstra University in New York. The major party candidates hoped to make their case to the record number of American voters expected to watch. Meanwhile, third party candidates Gary Johnson and Jill Stein, despite pulling a combined double digits in national polls, were locked out.

[Subscribe to Reason’s YouTube channel]

The lack of an alternative viewpoint to the Republican-Democrat status quo led to some familiar discussions. On security, Trump emphasized his support for bringing back and expanding New York City’s defunct stop-and-frisk policy while Clinton focused on the need for more restrictions on gun ownership. Trump’s failure to acknowledge that stop-and-frisk was both unconstitutional and ineffective in reducing crime was only matched by Clinton’s failure to mention that gun violence is at historic lows despite soaring gun sales.

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For libertarians in particular, the most egregious parts of the debate may not have been the disagreements, but the times when the candidates were aligned. They nodded in agreement when it came to opposing free trade accords, increasing spending and debt, and denying gun rights to people placed on government lists without due process.

Also, NBC’s Lester Holt made a brief appearance as moderator. Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] CNN Cuts Off Jill Stein’s Criticism of Hillary Clinton, Pivots to Conversation About Trump

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