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Friday, February 24, 2017

CNN and other news organizations were blocked Friday from an off-camera White House press briefing.

There was no immediate explanation from the White House.

The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and Politico were also excluded from the meeting, which is known as a gaggle and is less formal than the televised Q-and-A session in the White House briefing room.

The conservative media organizations Breitbart News, The Washington Times and One America News Network were allowed in.

The Associated Press and Time magazine boycotted the briefing because of how it was handled.

The White House Correspondents Association also protested the move.

"The WHCA board is protesting strongly against how today's gaggle is being handled by the White House," it said in a statement. "We encourage the organizations that were allowed in to share the material with others in the press corps who were not. The board will be discussing this further with White House staff."

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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Know that cliche "Where there's smoke, there's fire"? The Trump White House is now engulfed in smoke over contacts between his presidential campaign (and transition team) and the Russian government. It's time for Trump to dump a whole heaping bucket of cold water on the fire or risk it beginning to burn out of control and threatening his entire presidency.

The danger to Trump surged Tuesday night when the New York Times and CNN both reported that numerous contacts had been detected between Trump campaign officials and the Russians over the course of the 2016 race. While it remains unclear just how high-ranking these aides were or whether there was any coordination with the Russian efforts to hack the election, the very fact that Trump officials were reportedly in regular contact with Russia flies directly in the face of a slew of denials from Trump and his aides on that matter over the course of the last many months.


Thursday, February 02, 2017

Whenever an extremist in the Muslim world does something crazy, people demand that moderate Muslims step forward to condemn the extremism. So let's take our own advice: We Americans should now condemn our own extremist.

In that spirit, I hereby apologize to Muslims. The mindlessness and heartlessness of the travel ban should humiliate us, not you. Understand this: President Trump is not America!

I apologize to Nadia Murad, the brave young Yazidi woman from Iraq who was made a sex slave -- but since escaping, has campaigned around the world against ISIS and sexual slavery. She has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize, yet is now barred from the United States.

I apologize to Edna Adan, a heroic Somali woman who has battled for decades for women's health and led the fight against female genital mutilation. Edna speaks at American universities, champions girls' education and defies extremists -- and she's one of those inspiring me to do the same. read more


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Stocks fluctuated, the dollar weakened slightly and buying picked up in Treasurys as President-elect Donald Trump slammed the drug industry in comments to the press and vowed health care costs would be cheaper in America.

But Trump did not discuss infrastructure spending or tax cuts that the markets had been hoping to get more details on from his first press briefing since the election. He did say, however -- not for the first time -- that companies that move out of the United States and then sell goods back into America would be taxed at the border.

"Pharma has a lot of lobbyists, a lot of lobbyists and a lot of power, and there's very little bidding on drugs we're the largest buyer of drugs in the world yet we don't bid properly," he said. "We're going to start bidding we're going to save billions of dollars over a period of time and we're going to do that with a lot of other industries."


Wednesday, January 04, 2017

My mom didn't support our family on two jobs people typically associate with teenagers because she was lazy, or because she hadn't figured out how to find her bootstraps and pull herself up by them. My dad actually made decent money as a well-driller when my brother and I were born, but he lost his job after a back injury he suffered lifting a pipe.

In a town hit hard by the early Reagan-era farm recession, there were few options for my mom, who until that point had done one job: she raised my brother and me.

So, as a 30-year-old woman with two kids and a husband who couldn't work, she got a job on the morning shift at McDonald's, serving Egg McMuffins to the same people she had gone to high school with.

She wasn't the picture often painted of the minimum wage earner. She wasn't a teenager. And she didn't lack ambition. In fact, she was doing something our society says it admires: going to work, and doing whatever she could to support a family that needed her. read more


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