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Guns and Crime

Why Thomas Massie opposed the concealed carry reciprocity bill: More background checks



Congressman Thomas Massie opposed a concealed carry reciprocity bill that allows license holders to conceal and carry their firearms in other states that also allow concealed carry. Some may be surprised by this as the conservative has always been a firm supporter of the 2nd Amendment, but his reasoning for opposing the bill is righteous. The House decided to combine the reciprocity bill with another bill that increases background checks.

By combining the bills, the House hoped to get something passed that could also make it through the Senate. Unfortunately, doing so made the bill untenable for some conservatives who see adding more background checks as a bridge too far. I tend to agree with Massie. Here’s his video explaining why he planned on voting against the combined bill, which passed today.

House passes concealed carry gun bill bipartisan support for enhancing background checks for gun purchases, the bill passed along party lines, 231-198, due to Democratic opposition to the concealed-carry reciprocity measure.

The gun policy measures were originally two separate bills. But House GOP leaders opted to combine them so that lawmakers only had to cast one vote.

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Hillary Clinton was ‘grossly negligent’… until Peter Strzok edited it to prevent criminal charges



Hillary Clinton was grossly negligent until Peter Strzok edited it to prevent criminal charges

Fox News obtained the original draft of former FBI Director James Comey’s statement recommending no charges against presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. There were edits made that all downplayed the way Clinton and her team handled classified information. The most important edit was made by FBI agent Peter Strzok who is at the heart of the texting scandal in which he expressed very negative views against then-candidate Donald Trump while supporting the subject of the FBI investigation, Clinton.

The edit made by Strzok changed the phrase “grossly negligent” to “extremely careless.” This is important because being “grossly negligent” is a standard for criminal prosecution. If the conclusions in this report turn out to be true, it’s fair to draw the conclusion that this and other edits were made specifically to give Comey and the FBI justification for ending the investigation and recommending against criminal charges.

Fox News host Bret Baier asked his correspondent what Capitol Hill might do with this information.

“Well, what jumps out at me from this draft, Bret, is that when you look at the changes that are made, every single change really works in the favor of Hillary Clinton,” said Fox News Chief Intelligence correspondent Catherine Herridge. “It decreases rather than increases her legal jeopardy.”

She continued to state that “people on the Hill want to know who exactly made the edits because there is a footnote in the letter that refers to the FBI Office of General Counsel.”

Former FBI counsel Lisa Page was in this office at the time. She was the person texting back and forth with Strzok expressing sentiment against Trump and in favor of Clinton. She and Strzok were involved in an extramarital affair at the time.

Further Reading

Comey edits revealed: Remarks on Clinton probe were watered down, documents show an early draft, Comey said it was “reasonably likely” that “hostile actors” gained access to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email account. That was changed later to say the scenario was merely “possible.”

Another edit showed language was changed to describe the actions of Clinton and her colleagues as “extremely careless” as opposed to “grossly negligent.” This is a key legal distinction.

Johnson, writing about his concerns in a letter Thursday to FBI Director Christopher Wray, said the original “could be read as a finding of criminality in Secretary Clinton’s handling of classified material.”

Final Thoughts

This all smells very much like a political action by activist FBI agents. They wanted Clinton to win (or Trump to lose) so badly they were willing to overlook criminal activities by their candidate in hopes she could beat Trump. I didn’t vote for Trump (or Clinton) but he won despite obvious attempts by the Obama administration to tip the scale.

It’s at least a little ironic that the special counsel directed to find Russian hacking and the FBI team who were attempting to cover for Clinton are looking more and more like shills for the Democrats. Every new piece of information about the investigations makes Robert Mueller and James Comey look incompetent at best, corrupt at worst.

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Guns and Crime

Defending the FBI: Is there a right to a friendly agent?



Defending the FBI Is there a right to a friendly agent

The federal special investigation into the Trump Administration’s or its individual members’ various activities with Russia, real estate and other assorted subjects is tainted by one agent’s supposed political bias against President Trump, according to a dominant narrative in the political arena this month.

I disagree.

An investigation is not supposed to be scrupulously politically impartial. That’s because it is an adversarial process. Investigators are the adversaries of the subjects and targets of their investigation.

Of course, an investigation is supposed to search for and follow objective facts. It is supposed to refrain from prejudging people, an act which contradicts the imperative to be fact-based. The investigation is also supposed to be open-minded (not open-ended), insofar as investigators should be mindful of the “unknown unknowns,” meaning facts which can move an investigation in a direction which was previously, simply unanticipated.

However, political leanings do not mean that an investigator should automatically be disqualified from a case. Let’s be aware that if political opinions considered adverse to an investigative subject on one hand warrant removal, logical consistency suggests that opposite opinions (i.e., opinions supporting the subject) would qualify an agent’s assignment to an investigation.

Just imagine the circus that would result, if only liberal Democratic agents could investigate liberal Democrats, only conservative Republicans investigate conservative Republicans under investigation.

Personal opinions should be relevant in hiring and staffing decisions only if and when they interfere with the primary requirement to put facts first.

An agent’s public expressions of political sentiment may be relevant, however, if those expressions bear on the agent’s judgment. It is hard to argue, and I am not arguing, that social media posts for or against a candidate for public office are inherently benign and neutral; I do raise the issue of whether an agent is exercising the proper amount of judgment and discretion when he or she ever expresses opinions on social media or elsewhere in public.

While the First Amendment protects us from government intrusion into speech, when such speech interferes with the requisite judgment necessary to do work on behalf of the government, some restrictions may be appropriate. There is no right to work for the government, much less to be an FBI agent; these are privileges which are earned and sustained.

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Guns and Crime

Three Trump accusers tell their story to Megyn Kelly



Three Trump accusers tell their story to Megyn Kelly

Nearly two dozen women came out before the 2016 election to accuse Donald Trump of various types of sexual misconduct. Three of those women went on Megyn Kelly’s show to tell their story.

Andrea Ruth over at RedState expounded on this development:

Megyn Kelly Interviewed Three of Trump’s Alleged Sexual Harassment Victims, Here’s What They Had to Say Kelly interviewed three of the women with allegations of sexual harassment and other misconduct on her NBC morning show Monday. Rachel Cooks, Jessica Leeds and Samantha Holvey each described their encounters with Trump that left them “confused” and feeling “awful.”

The worst of the three allegations is also the oldest and stems back to a flight in which Jessica Leeds says she sat next to Trump in the 1970’s. Following the meal service, Leeds said Trump began to grope her and kiss her, but when his hand started going up her skirt she managed to get away.

Will this turn into anything? There’s no way to know at this point, but pressure appears to be mounting for something to happen. Some accusers are calling on Congress to investigate the President.

Trump’s alleged sexual misconduct should be investigated by Congress, accusers say women — Jessica Leeds, Rachel Crooks, and Samantha Holvey — appeared at a press conference in New York City on Monday to detail their experiences with Trump, all of which occurred before he was elected president but spanned decades.

“They’ve investigated other Congress members, so I think it only stands fair that he be investigated as well, and I think also a nonpartisan investigation is very important, not just for him but for anybody that has allegations against them,” Holvey said. “This isn’t a partisan issue. This is how women are treated every day.”

If the current trend of investigating and punishing powerful men accused of sexual misconduct holds for the President as well, it’s likely we’ll keep hearing about this leading up to the midterm elections.

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