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Liberal media goes in for the kill on Tom Price. Trump should resist

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Tom Price has been targeted for nearly a year by liberal media. The Secretary of HHS was a fan favorite of liberal media attacks for decades, as he wound his way through Georgia politics. Certain people become targets when they consistently touch liberal trip-wire issues like abortion and socialized medicine.

Background

It might have been Price’s membership in the AAPS, a physician group dedicated to “fight socialized medicine and to fight the government takeover of medicine.” It might have been his unapologetic Christianity. It might have been his success as a medical doctor.

Price certainly picked the right specialty: orthopedic surgeon. His net worth is somewhere north of $10 million, which is par for the course for a good orthopedic surgeon who’s been practicing for 20 years. In the conservative Georgia 6th district, Price easily won the seat occupied by Johnny Isakson when Isakson became a senator, and held it for twelve years.

Now the left-wing media has thrown the kitchen sink at Price to get him out of politics. Having a renowned medical doctor who is opposed to socialized medicine, pro-life, and conservative to the core is simply too much for the left to tolerate. They have declared war on Price like they did with John Ashcroft in President George W. Bush’s first term. No issue is too small or insignificant to avoid becoming a scandal.

Here’s a short list of them, as Erick Erickson of The Resurgent, as an Atlanta-based radio host, has been keeping track.

Analysis

Now the media thinks they’ve found the “kill shot” with this private jet fiasco. It’s really a nothing story. Cabinet-level officials travel on military, government jets all the time. I don’t think John Kerry set foot on a commercial airliner for his entire term. Technically, the White House is supposed to reserve private jets for national-security purposes, so the Secretary of State would be “entitled.” When Price travels using privately chartered jets, it simply becomes a cost and budget issue.

It’s really funny that Democrats who favor billions in wasteful programs and sinecure appointments for like-minded political cronies to run those programs, have a problem with $400,000 of private jet flights. In fact, President Obama approved 22 percent more government flights in its first eight months than Trump’s administration. This isn’t about money, or waste. It’s about targeting Tom Price.

Trump White House approved fewer military flights by officials than Obama’s team | McClatchy Washington Bureau

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/politics-government/white-house/article175507341.htmlAs the White House faces criticism over costly taxpayer-funded travel, the Trump administration released new statistics showing it authorized fewer flights on military aircraft by senior government officials than Barack Obama’s staff did. There were 77 so-called White House support missions authorized between Jan. 20 and Sept. 19, according to statistics compiled by the White House military office. By comparison, there were 94 such flights during the first eight months of Obama’s tenure.

Price is worth millions. He has offered to reimburse the government for the flights, which he can well afford, and not fly on chartered jets any more. The story should end there, but again, the liberal press wants Price gone.

The Takeaway

What’s next? Expect the media and various elements of Antifa or other “protest” groups to stake out airports where Price is headed. Democrats in Congress have already reportedly demanded Price’s schedule, in a transparently partisan attempt at “oversight” so they can leak details to their media buddies. Watch for the conflicts, the sound bites, and the drum-beat to make Price the story (and not Trump). As the stories pile up, Trump will be more open to firing Price for the venal sin of taking the Boss’s spotlight.

They’ll repeat the narrative, “the President’s mad as hell.” They’ll shove microphones in the faces of fleeing Republicans, who will desperately try to make Capitol elevator doors close faster, shouting questions about what they think about Price’s flights. They’ll bring up the discredited and debunked stock trade stories as if they’re fresh news. They’ll pester and pick until the scabs bleed.

This isn’t journalism. It’s activism. Look at all the coordinated attacks, starting with former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara’s claim he was investigating Price when he was fired by Trump. Bharara is now working for CNN as an analyst. How convenient.

Perspectives

How much longer can Tom Price remain in Trump’s cabinet? | MSNBC

http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/how-much-longer-can-tom-price-remain-trumps-cabinetThe controversy surrounding HHS Secretary Tom Price’s private-jet travel has steadily grown more serious over the last week, and it’s hardly unreasonable to think in a normal administration, the far-right cabinet secretary would have to resign in disgrace. What we don’t know, however, is whether Price’s boss is thinking along these lines. It’s worth noting for context that a month ago, the president spoke to the Boy Scout Jamboree, and Price was on hand for the event.

Donald Trump now has two reasons to oust HHS Secretary Tom Price from his post. Will he?

Will Trump Fire Tom Price Over Private Flights? – The Atlantic

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/09/the-price-is-wrong/541314/After a series of stories spotlighted the secretary of Health and Human Services’s expensive, taxpayer-funded travel, the president said he was unhappy.

Tom Price, the secretary of health and human services, has garnered widespread condemnation for his use of taxpayer-funded charter jets, and on Wednesday he gained another noisy critic: his boss. “I was looking into it and I will look into it,” President Trump said of Price’s travel. I let him know it.” Trump declined to say whether he had confidence in Price.

Price in Trump’s crosshairs as expensive travel scrutinized – CNNPolitics

http://www.cnn.com/2017/09/28/politics/trump-tom-price-planes/index.htmlThe White House said Thursday it was considering adopting new oversight of administration officials’ use of private planes as President Donald Trump’s health boss — who announced he would pay back the government for only part of his series of charter flights — finds his job in jeopardy.

Republicans fume over Tom Price’s use of private jets – CNNPolitics

http://www.cnn.com/2017/09/28/politics/congress-reaction-tom-price-flights/index.htmlPatience is waning on Capitol Hill for HHS Tom Price who reportedly spent thousands of taxpayer dollars on privately chartered flights

Final Thoughts

This is so obviously a coordinated smear attempt. The same tactics were used in the early 2000s to get rid of another favorite target of the media: John Ashcroft. His religious faith, conservative credentials, and decades in politics simply caused too much headache for the Bush administration, that was fighting three wars. Two wars against terrorist enemies, and one against the media.

The liberal press cabal had also targeted Jeff Sessions, but is now more sympathetic to him since he was berated by Trump. They’d love to see Sessions fired because it hurts Trump. With Price, it seems they want to see him gone simply because he’s Tom Price. Sessions and Price enable two of Trump’s signature campaign promises: peeling back Obamacare and enforcing immigration law. Trump resisted firing Sessions. He needs to resist firing Price.

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Economy

US pledges $10.6B aid for Central America, southern Mexico

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US pledges 106B aid for Central America southern Mexico

MEXICO CITY (AP) — The United States pledged $5.8 billion in aid and investment Tuesday for strengthening government and economic development in Central America, and another $4.8 billion in development aid for southern Mexico.

The U.S aid aims to promote better security conditions and job opportunities as part of a regional plan to allow Central Americans and Mexicans to remain in their countries and not have to emigrate.

The plan was announced in a joint U.S.-Mexican statement released by the State Department and read aloud by Mexican Foreign Relations Secretary Marcelo Ebrard in the Mexican capital.

“In sum I think this is good news, very good news for Mexico,” Ebrard said.

Newly inaugurated President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador waxed poetic about the plan to provide jobs so people won’t have to emigrate.

“I have a dream that I want to see become a reality … that nobody will want to go work in the United States anymore,” Lopez Obrador said at a morning news conference before the announcement.

The combination of public and private investment for the stay-at-home effort doesn’t require congressional approval, unlike Trump’s signature project to stem illegal immigration — a border wall.

The U.S. State Department issued a simultaneous statement saying “The United States is committing $5.8 billion through public and private investment to promote institutional reforms and development in the Northern Triangle,” a term that refers to Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador.

Lopez Obrador’s administration has said it is also interested in agricultural, forestry and tourism projects in southern Mexico, and the U.S. said it will contribute to those efforts.

The U.S. Overseas Private Investment Corporation “is prepared to invest and mobilize $2 billion in additional funds for projects in southern Mexico that are viable and attract private sector investment,” according to the statement. “This amount is in addition to the $2.8 billion in projects for Mexico through OPIC’s current investment pipeline.”

Ebrard said “The commitments established here signify more than doubling foreign investment in southern Mexico starting in 2019.”

Southern states like Chiapas and Oaxaca are home to many of Mexico’s poorest communities. Lopez Obrador, who took office Dec. 1, has sought to make development in that region a priority, including plans for a “Mayan train” stretching from touristy parts of the Yucatan Peninsula down to Chiapas.

It was unclear if Mexico would give anything in return. A planned announcement about Mexico’s migration policy was postponed until Wednesday.

The United States has reportedly wanted Mexico to allow migrants seeking asylum in the United States to remain in Mexico while their applications are processed.

Ebrard had previously suggested that about $25 billion in U.S. investment would be an appropriate figure for what Mexicans and Central Americans have dubbed “The Alliance for Prosperity” in the region.

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Culture and Religion

Doctors baffled as inoperable brain tumor in 11-year-old Roxli Doss miraculously disappears

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Doctors baffled as inoperable brain tumor in 11-year-old Roxli Doss miraculously disappears

It was the worst news Scott and Gena Doss could have received. Their 11-year-old daughter, Roxli, was suffering from diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, or DIPG, a very aggressive brain tumor. To be sure, her parents sought multiple opinions to see if the worst-case scenario perhaps wasn’t what they thought it was.

Everyone agreed. It was bad.

“At Dell Children’s, Texas Children’s, at Dana-Farber, at John Hopkins, and MD Anderson, all agreed it was DIPG,” said Scott.

The prognosis was grim, but then something miraculous happened.

Texas girl’s inoperable brain tumor miraculously vanishes

https://nypost.com/2018/12/18/11-year-old-girls-inoperable-brain-tumor-miraculously-vanishes/Roxli underwent weeks of radiation as her Buda community rallied by holding a benefit for her in August, when all her parents could do was pray for a miracle.

“And we got it,” an overjoyed Gena said.

“Praise God, we did,” Scott added.

“When I first saw Roxli’s MRI scan, it was actually unbelievable,” Harrod said. “The tumor is undetectable on the MRI scan, which is really unusual.”

Doctors have no idea why the tumor vanished.

My Take

Those of us who share faith in God and His plan are rarely surprised to hear stories like this one. Medical science can only go so far before a higher power must be called on to intervene. We hope and pray the Doss family’s story can inspire others.

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Foreign Affairs

Sens. Cotton, Cruz to introduce resolution recognizing Israeli sovereignty of Golan Heights

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Sens Cotton Cruz to introduce resolution recognizing Israeli sovereignty of Golan Heights

“Israel gained possession over the Golan Heights in a defensive war over 50 years ago and has responsibly controlled the area ever since,” stated Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas). “It’s past time for the United States to recognize reality by affirming Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights.”

 Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) are planning to introduce a Senate resolution on Tuesday urging the United States to formally recognize Israeli control of the Golan Heights.

Jewish Insider first reported this development.

The outlet reported that the resolution states that “Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights is critical to Israel’s national security,” and that “Israel’s security from attack from Syria and Lebanon cannot be assured without Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.”

“It is in the United States’ national security interest to ensure that the [Bashar] Assad regime faces diplomatic and geopolitical consequences for the killing of civilians, the ethnic cleansing of Syrian Sunnis and the use of weapons of mass destruction,” it adds.

“Israel’s northern border is threatened by Iranian forces and their proxies in Lebanon and Syria, including Hezbollah’s 150,000 rockets, armed drones, newly discovered terror tunnels and more,” said Cruz and Cotton in a joint statement released by their offices. “Meanwhile, with the Ayatollahs’ help, Bashar al-Assad’s regime is on the verge of securing victory in Syria’s civil war. He may soon turn his attention back to threatening the Jewish state.”

“Israel gained possession over the Golan Heights in a defensive war over 50 years ago and has responsibly controlled the area ever since,” they added. “It’s past time for the United States to recognize reality by affirming Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights.”

“Protecting the Syrian interest on the Golan Heights means protecting the Iranian interest,” former Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Dore Gold told JNS. “Does anyone seriously want to do that? Besides the Golan has been in Israeli hands many more years than it was in Syrian hands. The time to recognize our sovereignty has come.”

Groups such as the Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET) have advocated for this U.S. acknowledgment.

“U.S. recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights is an issue that is critical to the national security interests of the United States of America,” EMET founder and president Sarah Stern told JNS. “Largely because of President [Barack] Obama’s failure to enforce his red lines, Syria has become a failed state, and because of this vacuum that has been left over by the previous administration, Iranian, Russian and Turkish forces have swooped in to fill the void.”

“U.S. recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan is particularly important because Iranian backed forces, including the IRGC and Hezbollah, are attempting to dominate the region and form a land bridge from Tehran all the way to the Mediterranean Sea,” she continued. “By having American recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, we are sending a strong message to Tehran that their hegemonic aspirations must not go on unchallenged.”

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee has not taken a position on the resolution, “but given current political and security circumstances in Syria, it is inconceivable to imagine Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights,” a spokesperson told JNS.

However, Washington-based geopolitical strategist and diplomacy consultant John Sitilides told JNS that this move is unnecessary considering Israel’s control of the Golan and the backlash Israel could receive were there to be such a recognition.

“Israel has been skillfully capable of controlling the Golan and defending its own national sovereignty and recognized borders, even against terror organizations and nation-states, without annexing the region,” he said. “Optimally, any change of sovereign borders in the aftermath of war and military occupation should involve and be approved by the disputing nations. This is an ill-timed and unproductive measure that may compel Israel’s closest Western allies to forsake it for the sake of international law and treaties.”

But according to Jonathan Schanzer, senior vice president of research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, “U.S. recognition of Israel’s claims to the Golan is a recognition of reality.”

“In this sense, the move is long overdue,” he told JNS. “The Israelis will no longer consider ceding control of the Golan Heights to Syria now that the country effectively ceases to exist. Indeed, Israelis today cringe at the notion that their government might have made a deal with Bashar al-Assad.”

Nonetheless, he cautioned about possible negative ramifications behind a possible move by the United States, saying “after the United States recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, after it undermined the UNRWA narrative, and perhaps now, recognizing the Golan, Israel could be asked to acknowledge all that it has received and show flexibility to accommodate Trump’s peace plan. From the Israeli perspective, this could be the only real downside of a possible Golan move on the part of the administration.”

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