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Mitch McConnell launches preemptive attack on Roy Moore’s Senate seat

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Mitch McConnell launches preemptive attack on Roy Moores Senate seat

Mitch McConnell really doesn’t want Roy Moore to be a Senator. He tenaciously opposed him in the primaries. Wild rumors have been floated that it was McConnell’s super PAC’s oppo research that led to the Washington Post article in a botched attempt to bump Moore out of the primaries. If this is the case, unlikely as it may be, then he was double crossed. WaPo waited to use the story until after Moore secured the nomination.

Regardless of how involved McConnell was in the hit piece, he’s not holding back shots anymore. The Senate Majority Leader declared that if Moore wins the December 12 special election in Alabama, the Senate would launch an immediate ethics probe. Such an investigation could force Moore to testify under oath and would likely be the precursor to an expulsion attempt. Under Article 1, Section 5 of the Constitution, a two-thirds vote is required within the Senate to expel a member.

“It would be a rather unusual beginning,” McConnell told The Wall Street Journal at a CEO Council event on Tuesday. “I’d like to save the seat, and it’s a heck of a dilemma when you’ve got a completely unacceptable candidate bearing the label of your party within a month of the election.”

McConnell’s play may have a beneficial ulterior motive for the GOP. If Moore wins, the seat is safely in the Republicans’ hands if Moore is expelled or forced to resign with Republican Alabama Governor Ivey as the person to pick his replacement. McConnell has even floated plugging in Attorney General Jeff Sessions as a write-in candidate. While any write-in candidate, even someone as popular in Alabama as Sessions, would have virtually no chance of winning if Moore stays in the race, it would make the “Sessions Gambit” more plausible with McConnell moving chess pieces around now.

Further Reading

McConnell: Moore will face Senate ethics probe if he wins election

http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/senate/360404-mcconnell-moore-will-face-senate-ethics-probe-if-he-wins-electionThe Senate last expelled a member in 1862. McConnell oversaw the Senate’s ethics panel when then-Sen. Bob Packwood (R-Ore.) resigned in 1995 amid sexual harassment allegations and under the threat of expulsion.

Senate Republicans are increasing their pressure for Moore to step down from the Alabama Senate race after a bombshell report in The Washington Post, in which a woman accused Moore of making sexual advances toward her when she was 14 and he was 32. On Monday, a fifth woman came forward, saying he sexually assaulted her when she was 16.

The Sessions Gambit: White House floats rumor of plan to replace Roy Moore

https://noqreport.com/2017/11/13/mitch-mcconnell-can-get-rid-roy-moore-still-keep-seat-gop/Adding fuel to this scenario is the White House who seems to already be planning out this gambit. According to the NY Times, two White House sources have floated the idea of replacing Moore with Jeff Sessions. It would kill two birds with one stone for the White House. First, the President has expressed varying degrees of unhappiness with his Attorney General, so moving him back where he came from could end the President’s problem without causing a stir. Second, such a scenario of replacing Moore would be viewed negatively by many who voted for him, particularly if either Luther Strange or Mo Brooks, Moore’s main competitors in the primary, was appointed. Sessions is extremely popular in Alabama, so if he’s the replacement, the repercussions from voters would be minimized.

Mitch McConnell publicly floats Jeff Sessions as write-in alternative to Roy Moore

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/mitch-mcconnell-publicly-floats-jeff-sessions-as-write-in-alternative-to-roy-moore/article/2640675McConnell made the comments to the Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council while talking about who could mount a successful write-in campaign, like Sen. Lisa Murkowski did in Alaska in 2010. McConnell said she was popular in the state and was universally well-known, qualities that Sessions has in Alabama.

“The name being most often discussed may not be available, but the Alabamian who would fit that standard would be the attorney general,” McConnell said. “He’s totally well-known and is extremely popular in Alabama.”

Carl is a gaming fanatic, forever stuck on Reddit and all-around lover of food. He writes about cars for several publications and lives in northern California.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. ed

    November 14, 2017 at 8:22 pm

    I’m sure both Trump and McConnell would LOVE to move Sessions back to the Senate.
    Then Trump could assign a more “malleable” AG that would comply with Trump’s demands to fire Mueller, end investigations into Clinton activities and that would act as Trump’s “legal firewall” in the same way that Holder protected Obama.

    Make no mistake: Trump wants Sessions gone. Trump wants an AG that will do Trump’s bidding and shut down all investigations into Trump’s collusions with Russians, China, US Mafia or Democrats. Sessions has shown that he is NOT Trump’s lapdog and Trump is NOT happy. Nor is McConnell because it’s not implausible that Sessions has dirt on McConnell and knows where McConnell’s skeletons are buried. As AG, Sessions could take down McConnell if it came to open conflict. McConnell clearly wants Sessions back under his control.

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Entertainment and Sports

Trump takes on fictional celebrity, LaVar Ball

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Donald Trump LaVar Ball

Three UCLA basketball players got themselves in trouble in China for shoplifting. Their stupid actions embarrassed themselves, UCLA, and to some extent America. Many celebrities have come out to scold these basketball players including Whoopi Goldberg. While Donald Trump hasn’t championed this move as much as the right wing, he apparently had the basic expectation of a thank you from LaVar Ball, father of the thieving LiAngelo Ball. Trump did not receive a thank you as LaVar Ball would rather channel his Trump-hatred than acknowledge that the President did what he didn’t have to do for his son. Trump’s used to that but still he fired back letting the world know he didn’t have to pull strings while on his trip to China.

Perspectives

LaVar Ball dismisses idea of Donald Trump helping his son

https://nypost.com/2017/11/18/lavar-ball-dismisses-idea-of-donald-trump-helping-his-son/amp/LaVar Ball didn’t have much time for the idea that the President of the United States helped his son, LiAngelo, out of a potentially crippling situation for his basketball career.

“Who?” Ball told ESPN. “What was he over there for? Don’t tell me nothing. Everybody wants to make it seem like he helped me out.”

LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley and Jalen Hall were all caught shoplifting during UCLA’s trip to China to play a game against Georgia Tech. All three players returned to the States this week and are indefinitely suspended by the program.

“As long as my boy’s back here, I’m fine,” Ball told ESPN. “I’m happy with how things were handled. A lot of people like to say a lot of things that they thought happened over there. Like I told him, ‘They try to make a big deal out of nothing sometimes.’ I’m from L.A. I’ve seen a lot worse things happen than a guy taking some glasses. My son has built up enough character that one bad decision doesn’t define him. Now if you can go back and say when he was 12 years old he was shoplifting and stealing cars and going wild, then that’s a different thing.“Everybody gets stuck on the negativity of some things and they get stuck on them too long. That’s not me. I handle what’s going on and then we go from there.”

Donald Trump’s retort guarantees LaVar Ball exactly what he wants: More attention

https://sports.yahoo.com/donald-trumps-retort-guarantees-lavar-ball-exactly-wants-attention-182243192.htmlMost world leaders would surely have ignored LaVar’s graceless barbs or resisted the temptation to respond to basketball’s biggest loudmouth dad. Trump, of course, played right into LaVar’s hands by doing exactly the opposite. For better or worse, Trump is never one to let an insult roll off his back. The result is the most 2017 feud imaginable, one nobody wanted but perhaps everybody deserved. It pits two polarizing figures and shameless attention seekers who have risen in stature and prominence in similar ways over the past couple years.Some of LaVar’s marketing strategy seems like a pick and roll out of the Trump playbook. He floods the airwaves with outrageous comments sure to generate strong opinions in order to guarantee that he remains at the forefront of the news cycle.

One of LaVar’s most effective tactics has been to increase his own stature by trying to pick a ridiculous fight with someone more famous. He did it by insisting that the Warriors would be better off with his son, Lonzo, at point guard than Stephen Curry. He did it by saying he’d have beaten Michael Jordan one-on-one in his heyday. And he did it by saying his three sons were better set up for basketball success than LeBron James’ because the four-time NBA MVP’s pedigree will tougher to live up to.

Trump may have landed a blow with his tweet Sunday morning, but LaVar is winning this fight.

Reactions

Final Thoughts

Trump’s frustration, though immature, is understandable. We are all human. Therefore when we do something that helps someone else out, we have a certain expectation for gratitude. These athlete-students could have spent a long time in a Chinese jail missing out on March Madness and possibly a quality education. All for what, being too arrogant to pay for something? Trump pulled some strings and got them freed. Lavar Ball should be grateful he got his son back when he otherwise could have ended up like Otto Warmbier or as some sort of  political piece in a geopolitical Chinese checkers match. This is a rare moment where we can’t blame Trump for his tweets seeing as he’s simply lamenting his frustration.

But I’m disagreeing with the perspective above, Trump has won this fight and argument. As far as fathers go, Trump has managed to expose his children to wealth and fame without them becoming delinquents. In downplaying the seriousness of the situation, LaVar Ball sees little issue in shoplifting, and comes off as having a boys will be boys mentality with the situation. Stealing is wrong. We need to instill in our children a respect for people and their property. And we also should say thank you when someone bails our children out of a mess they created. As we celebrate Thanksgiving, we should acknowledge those who helped us and not belittle their role.

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Entertainment and Sports

LaVar Ball, Donald Trump spar over credit for getting students released in China

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LaVar Ball Donald Trump spar over credit for getting students released in China

Last week, President Trump asked Chinese President Xi Jinping to help out as three UCLA players were arrested for shoplifting. One of those boys was son of LaVar Ball who doesn’t believe the President influenced the outcome of his son’s arrest.

Ball also defended his son’s actions as “making a big deal out of nothing.”

LaVar Ball downplays U.S. President Donald Trump’s role in LiAngelo Ball’s release from China

http://www.espn.com/mens-college-basketball/story/_/id/21452594/lavar-ball-downplays-us-president-donald-trump-role-liangelo-ball-release-china“Who?” LaVar Ball told ESPN on Friday, when asked about Trump’s involvement in the matter. “What was he over there for? Don’t tell me nothing. Everybody wants to make it seem like he helped me out.”

Multiple sources told ESPN that UCLA officials are debating how long to sideline the three suspended freshmen players who admitted to shoplifting during the basketball team’s trip to China last week.

The President, as expected, took offense to Ball’s remarks. He “took the bait” and replied on Twitter.

My Take

This was a crystal clear opportunity for the President to take the high road and allow Ball to continue to make a fool of himself and his family. Instead, Trump replied in a way that brought him just as low as Ball. This seems to be the unspoken strategy for liberals: go when hitting Trump knowing he’s foolish enough to take himself down to their depths.

Further Reading

President Trump to LaVar Ball: I Should Have Left Your Kid in Jail

https://townhall.com/tipsheet/timothymeads/2017/11/19/trump-on-three-college-basketball-players-i-should-have-left-them-in-jail-n2411599“The three freshmen players, LiAngelo Ball, Jalen Hill and Cody Riley, had been detained for a week in their hotel rooms in Hangzhou after they were accused of shoplifting from a Louis Vuitton boutique. UCLA was in China for a game against Georgia Tech in Shanghai. The three did not play.”

After hearing reports of the situation, President Trump told members of the press that he would intercede on the three Americans behalf.

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News

As uncertainty engulfs Zimbabwe, Mugabe doesn’t step down

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As uncertainty engulfs Zimbabwe Mugade to step down

Update

Reports were wrong. Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe ended his address on national television today without officially stepping down.

The Latest on the Political Turmoil in Zimbabwe

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-19/urgent-the-latest-zimbabwe-lawmakers-definitely-seek-impeachmentZimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe has shocked the country by ending his address on national television without announcing his resignation, but he notes the political turmoil that led to his military house arrest and expulsion as ruling party leader.

“From tonight … the nation at all levels gets refocused,” Mugabe says.

He also says “failures of the past” may have triggered anger “in some quarters, which he calls “quite understandable.”

Original Story

What’s happening in Zimbabwe? Nobody really knows, not even people in Zimbabwe. In fact, as far as we can tell the people who were responsible for ousting Robert Mugabe as president aren’t really sure what’s happening. The uncertainty is thick and no answers are coming from the capital, Harare.

All we know for sure at this point is that Mugabe, the tyrant who has been making international headlines for decades but who has hit a tipping point in recent years as a universally despised leader, will be stepping down. Bloomberg reports he would prefer not to be impeached.

Mugabe Agrees to Stand Down as Zimbabwean President

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-19/end-of-the-line-for-zimbabwe-s-mugabe-as-ruling-party-dumps-himRobert Mugabe has agreed to end his four-decade reign as the leader of Zimbabwe and is preparing a statement with the military authorities who took power last week, according to three people familiar with the situation.

President Mugabe, who at the age of 93 is the world’s oldest leader, took the decision after his ruling party told him to resign or face impeachment, according to the people, who declined to be identified.

The problem is that there’s no clarity about who is actually going to be in charge. It’s assumed that “The Crocodile,” Emmerson Mnangagwa, is likely to assume the role of President, but the military seems to be calling the shots. Mnangagwa’s connections to the military and their affection towards him doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll have full control once a transition is initiated.

Emmerson Mnangagwa: The ‘crocodile’ who snapped back

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-41995876It has been an open secret in Zimbabwe for many years that Emmerson Mnangagwa wanted to succeed Robert Mugabe as president.

And Mr Mugabe has appeared to have toyed with his emotions – one day promoting him to senior positions in both the ruling Zanu-PF party and the government, raising speculation that Mr Mnangagwa was the “heir apparent”, but later demoting him after he possibly displayed his ambitions a bit too openly.

This story is developing quickly, though hopes that the state-run evening news would shed light on the situation were dashed when no formal announcement was made prior to airing.

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