Senators from both parties remained doubtful about the administration's ability to reunify more than 2,500 separated families, and skeptical that the "zero tolerance" policy will not be resurrected, following a closed-door briefing on Capitol Hill by administration officials. Senators left the briefing frustrated at the lack of answers by a handful of administration officials, saying they were given no guarantee that every child separated from their parent would be reunited. ... "There was never the intention and certainly the design of any system to ever reunify these children from their parents," Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., said at a news conference. "So what we have seen over the ensuing weeks is complete pandemonium." The administration has been reluctant to answer any questions and have refused to appear at a public hearing.
Current and former American diplomats are expressing disgust and horror over the White House's willingness to entertain permitting Russian officials to question a prominent former U.S. ambassador. One serving diplomat, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said he was "at a --- loss" over comments that can be expected to chill American diplomacy in hostile or authoritarian countries -- a comment echoed by former State Department officials as well. ... On Wednesday, Russian prosecutors escalated the stakes. The prosecutor-general's office said it wanted to interview Michael McFaul, the former U.S. ambassador to Russia, another Putin bete noire. read more
A Republican congressman from Minnesota has a long history of making deeply misogynistic comments on the radio, including lamenting that women can no longer be called "sluts." ... When radio host Rush Limbaugh called women's rights activists and then-graduate student Sandra Fluke "a slut" in February 2012, Lewis repeatedly expressed disbelief that people could no longer refer to women as sluts. "Well, the thing is, can we call anybody a slut? ... But it used to be that women were held to a little bit of a higher standard. We required modesty from women. Now, are we beyond those days where a woman can behave as a slut, but you can't call her a slut?"
The father of three children who perished in the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine four years ago has condemned Donald Trump for pandering to Vladimir Putin, accusing both leaders of lacking empathy for their fellow human beings. MH17 was travelling from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur. It crashed on July 17, 2014, after being shot down, killing all 283 passengers and 15 crew. ... Flight MH17 was shot down by a missile proven to be Russian, killing "our 3 beautiful children and their grandfather, and destroyed our life and many other lives in the process. That the man whose ass you've just been kissing did this, and continues to lie about it, is an irrefutable fact," [Anthony] Maslin wrote. "It's not anger that I feel towards the two of you, its something much, much worse. It is pity. You have no empathy for your fellow man, and you clearly have no idea what love is."
A Gallup poll released Tuesday found that 41 percent of Americans want to see Kavanaugh confirmed to the bench, while 37 percent of respondents want the Senate to reject his nomination. The four-point advantage for Kavanaugh is the lowest for any of the last 10 nominees since 1987 to be recorded by Gallup. Former Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork previously had the least amount of support in the poll's history, recording a six-point advantage over those who wanted to see his nomination fail when he was first announced in 1987, which it eventually did.