USA Today On Clinton Foundation: Hillary, Bill–Shut It Down

It’s not just Trump and the Republicans who are noticing the ethical dilemmas Clinton faces with her family’s foundation. Even members of the media are saying it’s time to shut it down to avoid any further pay-to-play allegations that could hamper her presidency should she win in November. The power couple has already said that they will sever their official ties with the Foundation should they win the election (Hillary has already resigned from the board), and they would stop accepting money from foreign and corporate interests. That still doesn’t shield them from paid access accusations, as we’ve seen from her time at State.

While Hillary vowed not to give preferential treatment to donors while she was secretary of state, the Clinton Foundation was still used as a back channel to guarantee meetings with her and donors to the the non-profit. More than half of the nongovernmental meetings she had while she was secretary of state were with Foundation donors. USA Today’s editorial board wrote this week that should Clinton win, she would have to shut down the Foundation in order to be successful in her long-term campaign to build trust with voters, among squashing other ethical questions that will certainly zap her political capital (not saying that this would be a bad thing—as it could soften her up for 2020...maybe?):

Ending foreign and corporate contributions is a good step, but allowing them to continue at least through the first week of November looks more like an influence-peddling fire sale (Give while you still can!) than a newfound commitment to clean government.

And the complex plan for allowing donations from U.S. citizens and permanent residents, keeping some parts of the Clinton Foundation alive, and maintaining scores of Clinton-family allies on the payroll is less an opportunity for a clean slate than a guarantee of new controversy.

[…]

…the only way to eliminate the odor surrounding the foundation is to wind it down and put it in mothballs, starting today, and transfer its important charitable work to another large American charity such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. If Hillary Clinton doesn’t support these steps, she boosts Trump’s farcical presidential campaign and, if she’s elected, opens herself up to the same kind of pay-to-play charges that she was subject to as secretary of State.

[…]

Should Clinton win, she’ll face an uphill battle to rebuild trust in government and find a way to get Washington working again. That task will be all the harder if millions of voters repulsed by Trump’s rhetoric and concerned with his volatile behavior find that his “Crooked Hillary” taunt had some substance in fact.

The New York Times  also noted how Hillary’s Foundation ties are beginning to impact her campaign, with polls showing that the vast majority of Americans were concerned about her nonprofit receiving millions of dollars from foreign donors while she was secretary of state. Even some of her staunchest allies, like former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, said that the Foundation should be closed in the circumstance that she becomes the next president of the United States:

A Bloomberg poll in June showed that 72 percent of voters said it bothered them either a lot or a little that the Clinton Foundation took money from foreign countries while Mrs. Clinton was secretary of state. In a CNN/ORC International Poll the same month, 38 percent of voters said Mr. Clinton should completely step down from the foundation, while 60 percent said he should be able to continue working with the foundation if his wife became president. Mr. Clinton said Thursday he would leave the foundation’s board if Mrs. Clinton won.

Edward G. Rendell, a former Democratic governor of Pennsylvania, said the foundation should be disbanded if Mrs. Clinton wins, and he added that it would make sense for the charity to stop taking foreign donations immediately.

The email fiasco is still plaguing her, and now she has to deal with the multitude of ethical questions concerning her dealings with her own nonprofit that’s been allegedly selling access for cash. The Clinton Foundation has been accused of being a bank for the wealthy and well connected to deposit their favors with the Clintons. And one of them could be the next president. Talk about all-access with America’s full faith and credit behind it. That’s the problem—and it should be taken seriously.

Barack Obama Creates New National Monument in Maine's North Woods

Two of Maine's representatives in Congress are not happy after President Obama signed an executive order creating the "Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument," placing 87,563 acres of Maine's woods under federal control. It is thought that the area may eventually be designated as a national park, but Sen. Susan Collins and Rep. Bruce Poliquin aren't too thrilled.

In a statement released to her website, Collins raised questions about the cost of upkeep, as well as concerns how the people who live near the land opposed the creation of the national monument.

“While I recognize that the President has the legal authority to designate national monuments, I believe he should not have used his executive authority given the objection lodged by the Maine Legislature, the lack of consensus among Mainers who live in the area, and the absence of Congressional approval. Bypassing Congress and taking this action without the support of the state and the local communities circumvented discussions of alternatives such as the creation of a national recreation area or management by the Forest Service—proposals that might have had broader support than the President unilaterally designating a national monument.

“This monument designation gives rise to a host of questions ranging from simple logistical matters to fundamental questions such as what will the impact be on taxpayers and whether the National Park Service, with its nearly $12 billion maintenance backlog, can afford to manage this new federal acquisition. While the Quimby family's promise of a $40 million endowment is generous, it is difficult to see how that amount can possibly cover the startup and ongoing costs of the monument area.

Similarly, Poliquin said he was opposed to the unilateral action, and implored Obama to work with the people of Maine to properly manage and use the land:

“As Maine’s Representative in Congress for the 2nd District, I joined Senators Collins and King in sending a letter to President Obama last November expressing reservations about the unilateral decision to designate a national monument in our State. We jointly raised concerns about the idea and urged the President to listen to local voices. Several communities most impacted by such a plan voted in non-binding referendums on the proposal in the Katahdin Region and in every instance the people voted in large numbers to oppose the concept. Additionally, the Maine Legislature passed a bipartisan resolution to officially oppose the idea as well.

“While opposed to a unilateral decision, ignoring the votes in the local towns, the Maine Legislature, and Congress, I will continue to work with everyone to move this project forward in the right way in order to build a stronger economy that creates more and better paying jobs in the Katahdin Region and in Maine.

“All public officials must do everything humanly possible to help ensure local input as to how this new federal land will be managed. Our local job creators—not Washington bureaucrats—know best how to use our working forests and provide proper access for industries to create more jobs including those in the outdoor recreation businesses, like snowmobiling, hunting, rafting, camping and so on.

More People Watched Teen Mom And A Friends Rerun Than Hillary on Kimmel

While the media fawned over Hillary Clinton's appearance on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" on Monday, apparently viewers had other television watching plans: the show was beaten in the ratings by the season 6 premiere of "Teen Mom" as well as by a repeat of an episode of "Friends."

For a point of reference, "Friends" ended its run in May of 2004, when this author was in the seventh grade.

"Kimmel" garnered only an 0.4 rating, whereas the newest episode of Teen Mom, where viewers saw Maci Bookout get engaged to her longtime boyfriend Taylor and find out she's pregnant with her third child, got a 0.7 rating.

According to The Hill, Republican nominee Donald Trump's appearance on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" got a 0.6 rating, or about a 30 percent more viewers.

But don't worry guys, Hillary Clinton opened a jar of pickles on Kimmel, so everything is fine.

While it's amusing that more people want to tune in to see a television show that's at least 12 years old (or, alternatively, watch a reality show featuring a collection of people who are essentially famous for being famous), this likely speaks to the sense of election fatigue the American public is experiencing. This has been a very long election, and neither candidate has very high favorability ratings. It's hard to blame people for wanting to watch something funny/relatively mindless instead.

Nicole Wallace Reminds Hillary Campaign That Sit-down Interviews Are Different Than Pressers

Hillary Clinton's Campaign Chief Robby Mook is running out of robotic talking points to use when responding to questions about the Democratic nominee's lack of press conferences. When MSNBC anchor Nicole Wallace pressed him about Clinton not holding a press conference in over 260 days, Mook noted - again - that Clinton has done hundreds of sit-down interviews.

Wallace, annoyed that Mook thought sit-down interviews were the same thing as pressers, reminded him that they are not.

"I didn't talk about interviews. I know the difference between a 3-minute ground-ruled interview and a press conference because I've put on a couple of each," she said. "Why wouldn't you put [Clinton] out there to answer questions that she can certainly handle if your defense is true?"

Well, why isn't the media asking Trump about his "foreign connections," Mook responded, avoiding a direct answer.

Wallace again noted that Clinton's avoiding the press only suggests there is truth to the report that the Clinton Foundation was granted special access to the State Department while she was secretary of state.

Mook laughed off these follow-up questions.

Fun Police: Milwaukee County Trying to Force Pokemon Go To Get A Permit

Pokemon Go is easily this summer's biggest viral sensation, with people around the world joining teams (Go Mystic!) and scrambling to catch 'em all. There have been plenty of stories about how the game has helped children with autism, fostered community, and inspired some budding entrepreneurs.

But none of this matters to the real-life Team Rocket in Milwaukee County, where officials are upset (?) that people are going to the county's parks to visit Pokestops and catch Pokemon. The county has written to Pokemon Go developer Niantic requesting that the company acquire a permit before "placing" anything in the park.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Niantic has not responded.

Cry me a river. Parks are meant to be played in and used by people. While it's a whole other issue why a mobile phone game was the catalyst that got people to go outside and actually visit said parks, it's still a good thing that people are doing it. A park is an appropriate place for a Pokestop. The government does not need to get its hands on everything. There is no safety concern with a Pokestop's "presence" in a public park, plus a Pokestop shouldn't constitute an "event" any more than a park bench or a playground would be an event. They're things people "visit"--even if one is imaginary. You can't put a permit on something that doesn't technically exist in the real world.

As for the issue of permits, I think Ron Swanson from "Parks and Recreation" said it best:

North Carolina GOP Official Says the State Polls Are 'B.S.'

The polls out of North Carolina are surprisingly poor for Donald Trump. The state, which has only voted Democrat twice since 1968, including for Barack Obama in 2008, currently favors Hillary Clinton over the GOP nominee, according to the RealClearPolitics average. Yet, if you ask at least one official from the North Carolina GOP, he'll dismiss the doomsday scenario for his party's nominee.

And Dallas Woodhouse, executive director of N.C. GOP, pointed to Republicans outpacing Democrats in voter registrations in the state as a sign that any concern is premature. “I think we always have reason to worry,” he said calling a recent NBC poll that showed Trump down by nine points in the state as “B.S.” “What I’m hearing is normal, healthy discussions around election time.”

Campus Republicans, meanwhile, say the passion shown in the primary is a good omen for November. 

Not all of the state GOP operatives are dismissing the polls, however.

“It certainly has the potential to be one of the worst elections we’ve seen in a long time,” said Carter Wrenn, a veteran GOP strategist in the state. Wrenn said looking at Trump’s troubles and latest polling, the question on Republicans’ minds across the state has been: “How bad could it get?”

It's not only the numbers in North Carolina making Republicans wince. States that are supposed to be Republican strongholds are only offering Trump tepid leads. In Texas, for instance, a recent poll gave him just a 6-point advantage. In Missouri, he's running neck-and-neck with Clinton.

His team must be a bit nervous because they are campaigning in the Lone Star State, as well as another normally red state, Mississippi.

Condoleezza Rice Seeks Justice for Former Secretary of State Framed by Hillary Clinton

As Hillary Clinton continues to urgently search for someone to blame for her private email scandal, she yet again is entangling herself in another lie.  

Last week, Gen. Colin Powell said in an interview with People magazine that Clinton has constantly been trying to throw his career under the bus ever since being reprimanded by FBI investigators.  

The Clinton camp says that in a conversation seven years ago, Powell said it was okay to use a private email server for her work as Secretary of State.  

“Her people have been trying to pin it on me,” he said referring to her State Department e-mail scandal.  “The truth is, she was using [the private email server] for a year before I sent her a memo telling her what I did."

Powell, the first African-American Secretary of State was valiantly defended by his successor, Condoleezza Rice, in a statement released on Wednesday.  

The Rice statement came through her chief of staff at Stanford University, Georgia Godfrey, who stated, “Dr. Rice isn’t doing any media right now. I can tell you, though, that she has no recollection of that conversation either.”

Dog Wins Third Mayoral Term in Minnesota Town

A dog in the Minnesota village of Cormorant Township has been elected to his third consecutive term as honorary mayor. Duke, a 9-year-old Great Pyrenees, is reportedly very good with children and has been "mayor" of the 20-person village since a successful write-in campaign in 2014.

The big, shaggy white dog was overwhelmingly re-elected at the sixth annual Cormorant Daze Festival. Anyone could pay a dollar and cast a vote.

Cormorant resident Karen Nelson says Duke "greets everyone" who comes to the village of about 20 people nestled among lakes about 180 miles northwest of Minneapolis.

Duke has not released any of his plans for the village, but one can assume his policies are very pet-friendly.

Burn After Reading: Obamacare Website Scrubs Any Reference On How To Keep Your Doctor

It was the biggest lie of the year: if you like your health care plan, you can keep it. It was one of the main selling points of the president’s health care overhaul, besides that the new law would cut costs. It hasn’t. To make things more intriguing, healthcare.gov has scrubbed references to the promise on their website, including whole sections on how you could keep your doctor under the Obamacare regime. Jeryl Bier of The Weekly Standard had more:

The original website contained a section entitled "Can I keep my own doctor?", later revised to "How to keep your doctor." A version of the website as of last October can be seen here:

Just before open enrollment began last year, however, this section was dropped. Now the same link takes users to a section entitled "How to pick a health insurance plan." (The internet address that contains the words "keep-your-doctor" redirects to an address ending with "plan-types.")

The closest the website comes to mentioning the president's "keep your doctor" commitment is, "To be certain your doctor is included in your plan's network, contact the plan or provider for the most up-to-date information."

It may be appropriate to tweak some aspects of the site, given that the entire law is on the verge of total collapse. The notion whether the law was meant to collapse on itself to pave way for single-payer health care has been a subject of debate among conservatives since the law was passed. Americans have been opting to remain uninsured and pay the penalty since it's more economical for them. The premiums for almost every plan, including the low-cost plans, have shot through the roof. So, yeah, I guess how I can see why the Obama’s speechwriters shared a nice laugh about the “you can keep it” promise. Disgusting.

Clinton, Trump In A Dead Heat...In Missouri

Republican nominee Donald Trump may be making some pivots in his campaign, but have they come too late? Right now, Trump could be in trouble in very friendly GOP territory, with him neck-and-neck with Clinton in South Carolina. He’s also leading by one…in Missouri (via CNN):

Donald Trump is leading Hillary Clinton by a single percentage point in Missouri, according to a Monmouth University poll released Tuesday.

The survey found that 44% of voters support Trump, while 43% back Clinton, well within the poll's margin of error of 4.9 percentage points. Another 8% of respondents told pollsters they intend to vote for Libertarian Gary Johnson, 1% said they would write in another candidate,and the remaining 5% were undecided.

The poll is one of the first snapshot of voters in Missouri -- a state that has remained red during the past four presidential elections -- since the July conventions.

And here’s South Carolina:

Yet, there’s also reason to brush off this round of polling. For starters, the South Carolina poll was commissioned by the state Democratic Party. The Missouri poll only had a sample size of 401, far below the minimum of 600 people to get a more accurate gauge on a statewide race. At the same time, let’s not kid ourselves. While the founder of Current TV, Michael Rosenblum might disagree (he thinks Trump will win, polls be damned), Trump is losing right now—and set to lose big if something doesn’t happen soon. I’m guessing he feels he can lead a successful comeback in the upcoming debates. Also, don’t put too much stock in this rather bizarre notion that Trump is actually winning in the polls because of “undercover Trump voters.” A point that was made by the Republican nominee’s new campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway. It’s hard to put faith in a factor that cannot be proven. Moreover, it could be a rather embarrassing turn of events for those who actually put faith in this theory that there are hidden/silent blocs of voters that will vote for their candidate. Wendy Davis’ dumpster fire of a gubernatorial race, where she couldn’t even break 40 percent of the vote, was described as a rudderless clown show that placed faith on the notion that there was some silent liberal base, hence why her team thought it was fine that the die-hard abortion rights supporter could run like a normal liberal Democrat. As Guy noted, Trump may be putting more faith in the polls than relying on his silent legions of supporters since he’s campaigning in Texas and Mississippi. States no Republican should spend serious time in by the way, but that’s what you have to do when you fundraise.

Obama Blocks Congressional Inquiry Into Our Non-Ransom, Leverage Payment To Iran

So, will we ever find out the internal dynamics of the $400 million non-ransom that used for leverage by an administration that said we don’t pay ransom, even though it was stipulated that the monies wouldn’t be handed over until the four detained Americans were released? In other words, it was a ransom. Yet, the taxpayers will probably never know how their $1.7 billion was paid to Iran over an arms deal dispute that dates back to 1979; the $400 million was part of that sum appropriated by Congress earlier this year. Why? Well, Obama has blocked congressional inquires Adam Kredo of The Washington Free Beacon has more:

The Obama administration is withholding from Congress details about how $1.3 billion in U.S. taxpayer funds was delivered to Iran, according to conversations with lawmakers, who told the Washington Free Beacon that the administration is now stonewalling an official inquiry into the matter.

The Departments of State, Treasury, and Justice have all rebuffed a congressional probe into the circumstances surrounding the $1.3 billion payment to Iran, which is part of an additional $400 million cash payout that occurred just prior to the release of several U.S. hostages and led to accusations that the administration had paid Iran a ransom.

The Obama administration has admitted in recent days that the $400 million cash delivery to Iran was part of an effort to secure the release of these American hostages, raising further questions on Capitol Hill about White House efforts to suppress these details from the public.

The $400 million was part of a $1.7 billion legal settlement reached with Iran earlier this year. Congressional inquiries into how this money reached Iran are failing to get answers.

Sens. Mark Kirk (R-IL), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), and David Perdue sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry demanding some more details about this payment, especially given that Iran is a state sponsor of terrorism. They also asked in their letter whether Iran would have released our citizens if the payment weren’t made, was the payment linked to their release, and guaranteed that these funds would not be sued to fund terrorism. It’s probably safe to say that this request will be put on the backburner. Right now, some serious spin/damage control needs to be executed to explain why we apparently pay ransom now.

Powerful: Mothers of Children Killed By Illegal Aliens Tell Their Stories

When 32-year-old Kate Steinle was shot and killed by illegal alien Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez during a walk with her father on a San Francisco pier in 2015, her case gained national attention and shined a spotlight on San Francisco's detrimental sanctuary city laws. Lopez-Sanchez was deported five different times before Steinle's death and had a long criminal record.

Unfortunately, Steinle's case wasn't isolated and is one of hundreds. Americans are killed by illegal aliens, many of them previously deported, every year in U.S. cities.

Last night on Hannity, mothers of those whose children who were killed by people who shouldn't have been in the country in the first place, told their stories.

Watch below:

Shocker: A Lot Of Clinton Foundation Donors Met With Clinton While She Was Secretary Of State

We’ve known this for some time, but there’s more information being unearthed that shows how Hillary Clinton’s State Department became just another arm of the Clinton Foundation. First, Clinton said at her confirmation hearing that no special treatment would be granted to Clinton Foundations donors. She said this under oath. Yet, more than half of the people she met outside of government gave money to the Clinton Foundation while she was secretary of state, according to the Associated Press. These funds were delivered either personally, through their companies, or other groups associated with these individuals. The publication added that 85 donors doled out nearly $160 million:

More than half the people outside the government who met with Hillary Clinton while she was secretary of state gave money — either personally or through companies or groups — to the Clinton Foundation. It's an extraordinary proportion indicating her possible ethics challenges if elected president.

At least 85 of 154 people from private interests who met or had phone conversations scheduled with Clinton while she led the State Department donated to her family charity or pledged commitments to its international programs, according to a review of State Department calendars released so far to The Associated Press. Combined, the 85 donors contributed as much as $156 million. At least 40 donated more than $100,000 each, and 20 gave more than $1 million.

Donors who were granted time with Clinton included an internationally known economist who asked for her help as the Bangladesh government pressured him to resign from a nonprofit bank he ran; a Wall Street executive who sought Clinton's help with a visa problem; and Estee Lauder executives who were listed as meeting with Clinton while her department worked with the firm's corporate charity to counter gender-based violence in South Africa.

The meetings between the Democratic presidential nominee and foundation donors do not appear to violate legal agreements Clinton and former president Bill Clinton signed before she joined the State Department in 2009. But the frequency of the overlaps shows the intermingling of access and donations, and fuels perceptions that giving the foundation money was a price of admission for face time with Clinton. Her calendars and emails released as recently as this week describe scores of contacts she and her top aides had with foundation donors.

ABC News cited the emails Judicial Watch released, noting that they appear to go against the pledge Clinton took regarding how donors would be treated should the Senate confirm her to be President Obama’s top diplomat.

Katie wrote about the contents of these emails, where top aide Huma Abedin was seen as the middle person between the donor, the Clinton Foundation, and the former first lady:

"In more than a dozen email exchanges, Abedin provided expedited, direct access to Clinton for donors who had contributed from $25,000 to $10 million to the Clinton Foundation. In many instances, Clinton Foundation top executive Doug Band, who worked with the Foundation throughout Hillary Clinton’s tenure at State, coordinated closely with Abedin. In Abedin’s June deposition to Judicial Watch, she conceded that part of her job at the State Department was taking care of 'Clinton family matters.’

[…]

Included among the Abedin-Band emails is an exchange revealing that when Crown Prince Salman of Bahrain requested a meeting with Secretary of State Clinton, he was forced to go through the Clinton Foundation for an appointment. Abedin advised Band that when she went through 'normal channels' at State, Clinton declined to meet. After Band intervened, however, the meeting was set up within forty-eight hours."

ABC News’ Brian Ross reported on this development for Good Morning America this week, where he rehashed the controversial appointment of Rajiv K. Fernando to the International Security Advisory Board in 2011, despite having zero experience in such matters. One member of the board told the news organization that they had no idea “who he [Mr. Fernando] was.” Yet, Fernando donated generously to the Clinton Foundation. He later resigned the same year of his appointment when the press started asking questions about his credentials concerning such a high-level appointment to such a sensitive national security board within the State Department. Fernando has continued to donate money to the Clintons, their foundation, and served as a superdelegate at the 2016 Democratic Convention.

Now, the question is will the White House be ground zero to cash in these favors? Clinton has lied about her private email arrangement when she served as secretary of state; why should we believe that they would stop accepting donations from corporate and foreign interests? Jonathan Chait of New York Magazine, who is in no way a hard-core conservative, noted that these ethical issues are bigger than Team Clinton thinks at present. It may not cost her the election (right now, she’s winning big), but it could sink her presidency.

Given the sticky dynamics of Clinton and the foundation, it should give some pause about whether the interests of the United States would be best served under Clinton. She helped sign off on the Russians taking control of uranium mining sites in the country with the approval of the sale of Uranium One to Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation. Keep in mind that at the time, the chairman of Uranium One gave $2.35 million to the Clinton Foundation in for separate transactions while this deal was being hashed out. Bill got $500,000 for a paid speech from a Kremlin-tied Russian bank selling Uranium One stock. Hillary’s State Department was part of the Committee on Foreign Investment that reviewed the deal since it was a national security matter as well. It was approved.

And if you think these concerns will dissipate should she become president, I think that’s a gross miscalculation, just like how her campaign completely misjudged the staying power of her email fiasco that succeeded in defining her as untrustworthy.

Flashback: Hillary Says Absolutely Nothing She Did At State Was Related to The Clinton Foundation

Since author Peter Schweizer published his blockbuster book Clinton Cash last year, detailing the relationship between the Clinton Foundation, the Clintons' now $100 million net worth and alleged quid-pro-quo donations for official access, there's been a slow drip of evidence showing the Clintons used the State Department as an extension of their Foundation. 

Earlier this week new emails unearthed through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by government watchdog Judicial Watch show longtime confidant and top Clinton aide Huma Abedin granting special access desired by foreign leaders and activists to Secretary of State Hillary after they donated to the Clinton Foundation. Meetings with Secretary Clinton were requested, they were denied and rerouted through the Clinton Foundation. After hefty donations to the Foundation were made by individuals wanting a meeting with Clinton and meetings were granted.

"In more than a dozen email exchanges, Abedin provided expedited, direct access to Clinton for donors who had contributed from $25,000 to $10 million to the Clinton Foundation. In many instances, Clinton Foundation top executive Doug Band, who worked with the Foundation throughout Hillary Clinton’s tenure at State, coordinated closely with Abedin. In Abedin’s June deposition to Judicial Watch, she conceded that part of her job at the State Department was taking care of 'Clinton family matters,' Judicial Watch detailed on its website Monday. "Included among the Abedin-Band emails is an exchange revealing that when Crown Prince Salman of Bahrain requested a meeting with Secretary of State Clinton, he was forced to go through the Clinton Foundation for an appointment. Abedin advised Band that when she went through 'normal channels' at State, Clinton declined to meet. After Band intervened, however, the meeting was set up within forty-eight hours."

Other people who worked through Abedin and her referral to the Clinton Foundation to get a meeting with Secretary Clinton include Slimfast tycoon S. Daniel Abraham, Hollywood sports executive and Wasserman Foundation President Casey Wasserman, St. Louis political power broker Joyce Aboussie, political activist Jill Iscol and others.

We also learned this week that half of the individuals who met with Secretary Clinton between 2009 and 2013 donated to the Clinton Foundation.

All of this brings us to July when Clinton said this:

Another lie in Clinton's long list of lies. 

Earlier this week it was revealed the FBI found an additional 15,000 emails Clinton failed to turn over to the State Department upon her Departure in 2013. Those are expected to be released in the next 30 days.

When she left the State Department, Clinton deleted 30,000 "personal" emails from her private server. Could those "personal" emails have been about Clinton Foundation business and donations for access to her official office at the State Department? Based on the evidence we already have, there is little doubt that was the case.

University in New York Offers "Stop White People Training"

Have you ever wondered how to respond to “uneducated people” with "good" arguments?  Well at one university in New York, your tuition and fees now cover a session directed to "help others take the next step in understanding diversity, privilege, and the society we function within.”

The State University of New York (SUNY) at Binghamton is now offering a course called “#StopWhitePeople2K16” as part of routine training for residential assistants.  Often called RA's, these students help with dorms and security as paid part-time employees.  

The state-funded school claims to be New York’s highest-ranking public college.

Afghanistan's American University Is Under Attack

UPDATE: New reports show that one student is dead, and 25 others are injured after an attack on American University in Kabul.

UPDATE: Five people are injured and have been taken to the hospital, reports NBC.

***Original Post***

Gunmen have stormed The American University of Afghanistan in Kabul, multiple news sources are reporting.

Witnesses have reported hearing both gunfire and explosions.

Multiple students and professors are trapped inside.

Weeks before Wednesday's attack, two professors were kidnapped outside of the university by five gunmen who were wearing Afghan military uniforms.

This post will be updated. 

Another Liberal Leader Comes Out Against Anti-Israel Boycott Movement

The Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement is a campaign intended to delegitimize Israel. Endorsed by pro-Palestinian groups and others who reject Israeli settlements in the West Bank, the campaign urges the boycott of Israeli goods and services. New York Gov. Cuomo, one of the country's most ardent liberals, has rejected BDS and even stripped funding from companies who sympathize with the campaign. Cuomo is now joined by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio in the growing number of liberals speaking out against BDS.

“Defending Israel is a matter — from my point of view as a progressive — is a matter of being consistent with progressive values,” de Blasio said, describing the BDS movement as one that "seeks to undermine the economy of the State of Israel and makes it harder for Israel to exist, therefore renouncing the very notion that the Jewish people need a homeland in a still dangerous and unsettled world.”

You may not agree with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government, but all Americans should at least believe in Israel's right to exist, de Blasio insisted.

The more leaders who reject this campaign, the better, especially since a shocking a poll from March showed that one-third of Americans actually approve of the boycott.

Report: British Woman Stabbed and Killed By Man Shouting 'Allahu Akbar' in Australia

Witnesses beheld a terrifying incident in Queensland, Australia after a French man reportedly stabbed and killed a British woman while shouting "Allahu Akbar" on Tuesday night. The Guardian has the details:

A French man allegedly cried “Allahu Akbar” during a stabbing attack that left a 21-year-old British woman dead in front of up to 30 onlookers at a backpackers hostel in Australia’s north-east.

The 29-year-old suspect allegedly repeated the phrase – which means God is greatest in Arabic – when arrested by Queensland police, who told of being “confronted with a terrible scene” at the hostel in Home Hill, about 100km (62 miles) south of Townsville, on Tuesday night.

Police have not confirmed or denied whether the man was inspired by terrorism, only noting they are investigating whether the attacker was suffering from mental health issues, or if it was something more sinister.

The attack also left two men injured.

We will provide updates as they come available.

Why Is Trump Campaigning in Texas and Mississippi?

Short answer: He's fundraising, but he's also losing this race, and he knows it. Sure, he's trailed in the RCP average for months -- with the exception of a very brief post-RNC blip -- so that's not exactly news.  But over the ensuing weeks, we've seen some of his loyalists dismissing, "unskewing" or even straight-up denying the polls. He's gonna win, they confidently assert, occasionally citing some quasi-plausible explanation or another.  In reality, however, the theory that Trump would unlock states that have been closed to GOP presidential candidates for decades lies in shreds.  Like it or not, has one narrow road to the White House, a prerequisite for which is locking down every state Mitt Romney carried four years ago.  With states like Missouri, Indiana, North Carolina, Georgia, and possibly others in play this cycle, Trump faces a serious challenge.  But shouldn't ruby red states like Texas and Mississippi, for crying out loud, be slam dunks for him?  One would think so, and polling seems to bear that out, even as the margins are too close for comfort in some polls.  And yet:

It's true that he's rattling the cash cup in both places, but a presidential nominee's time is a precious commodity.  When a candidate needs to fill his or her campaign's coffers by tapping donors from non-competitive areas, he'll typically parachute in very briefly, then quickly return to the trail.  Exceptions to this rule are rare, like this smart move by the GOP ticket.  Trump has either decided to stick with his inefficient and, frankly, stupid plan to hold big rallies everywhere he goes, or his team -- now led by an experienced pollster -- has determined that it's actually worth his while to exploit local coverage in these reliably Republican states.  If the Trump campaign has any inkling that either Texas or Mississippi might be close, it's already game over, rendering analyses like this purely academic.  But if there's a heavy dash for the former explanation at play here, donors and supporters alike should demand to know why the candidate is spending valuable hours in places other than, say, Pennsylvania (where he's trailed by double digits in the last four mainstream statewide polls), or Florida.  And speaking of the must-win Sunshine State:

That poll reeks of outlier status, but the average of the last three surveys of Florida gives Hillary a nine-point lead there.  If Florida really is slipping away, that's a "catastrophe" siren for the Trump folks. Plus, there are other reasons why the poll in question may not be as outlier-ish as it seems at first blush.  Meanwhile, latest numbers out of Virginia are also hideous, as are the last two national surveys, which put her in front by eight and 12 points, respectively.  It's long past triage time, which is why devoting any resources in "safe" states, beyond hyper-efficient fundraising efforts, is foolish.  Since I've fed you a steady diet of polling broccoli in this post, I feel obligated to include some strong evidence that even though Trump is quite weak there, Donald Trump does not appear to be in danger of dropping Utah.  Why?  Hillary Clinton is hilariously unpopular in the state, suggesting that her campaign's splashy announcement that they're opening up a Salt Lake City office is little more than a psychological feint.  I'll leave you with Trump's number one fan reacting...not well to the news that the object of her affection appears to be dramatically softening his stance on immigration, going so far as to praise Barack Obama (!) and George Bush as effective guardians of the border:

German Interior Minister: If We Ban Burqas, Then We'll Ban Santa Claus Too

Islam is at the foundation of a new debate in Germany that involves Christmas and Kris Kringle himself.  After proposing a ban on burqas in public, federal interior minister Thomas de Maiziere now has leftists in the country proposing a ban on Santa Claus in retaliation, according to reports.  

“We agree that we reject the burqa, we agree that we want to introduce a legal requirement to show one’s face in places where it is necessary for our society’s coexistence – at the wheel, at public offices, at the registry office, in schools and universities, in the civil service, in court,” Maiziere said.

He also went on to say that the full face veil “does not belong in our cosmopolitan country. We want to show our faces to each other and that is why we agree that we reject this — the question is how we put this into law.”

Ralf Jäger, the interior minister of North Rhine-Westphalia state who is against banning the burqa, argued that if the veil were banned for security reasons, then Santa Claus costumes would also need to be banned. If one item is banned for religious reasons, then all religious clothing would need to be banned he said.

“A burqa ban brings no security, but (is driven) only by election campaigns in some states,” he said.

Clinton's Press Secretary Reminds Trump: You Donated to The Clinton Foundation

Earlier this week GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump called for the Clinton Foundation to be shut down after new allegations of pay-to-play by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. 

The Clinton campaign has been firing back all week, arguing the Foundation does important work around the world to help those in poverty and to prevent the spread of HIV. 

Yesterday, Clinton campaign press secretary Brian Fallon reminded Trump that he donated money to the Clinton Foundation while Clinton was the secretary, making things a bit awkward. Trump also donated to Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign against Barack Obama. 

The Clinton Foundation is reportedly under FBI investigation for public corruption. On Tuesday, emails obtained by government watchdog Judicial Watch revealed top Clinton aide Huma Abedin, who is now working on Clinton's presidential campaign, set up meetings with then Secretary of State Clinton only after donations were made to the Clinton Foundation. Essentially, they were selling access. 

The Boston Globe, Huffington Post and other media outlets have called on the Clinton Foundation to be shut down if Clinton wins the presidency.

Ann Coulter Is Not Happy With Trump's Softening on Immigration

Author Ann Coulter, who is out promoting her new book In Trump We Trust, isn't happy about Trump's ever softening illegal immigration stance and is blaming consultants for the change.

“I think this is a mistake. It sounds like it’s coming from consultants,” Coulter said last night on Hardball with Chris Matthews. “I’ve thought he’s made other mistakes, and I’ve given him constructive criticism when I think he makes a mistake. I think this is a mistake.”

Trump's backtracking on tough illegal immigration measures, including mass deportations, shouldn't be surprising. After all, it was Trump who called Romney's comments about self-deportation for economic reasons "mean-spirited" and "maniacal." It's also Trump who regularly hires immigrant workers to complete his building projects. 

Real estate mogul Donald Trump recently reflected on former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s loss, telling Newsmax that the candidate failed to resonate among certain demographics in part because of his “maniacal” immigration policy.

“He had a crazy policy of self-deportation, which was maniacal,” Trump said. “It sounded as bad as it was, and he lost all of the Latino vote ... He lost the Asian vote. He lost everybody who is inspired to come into this country.”

“The Democrats didn’t have a policy for dealing with illegal immigrants,” Trump told Newsmax. “But what they did have going for them is they weren’t mean-spirited about it.”

On Monday during an interview with Bill O'Reilly, Trump said he will focus on the deportation of violent criminal aliens and "do what Obama has done," on immigration policy.

Sorry Ann, Trump's "mistake" could be seen coming a mile away.

Watch: The Collapse Of The Obama Administration’s No Ransom For Hostages Defense

“We don’t pay ransom for hostages,” said President Obama.

“It is against the policy of the United States to pay ransom for hostages,” said White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest.

“This was not ransom,” declared State Department Spokesman John Kirby

That united front lasted all of two weeks, when it was discovered that we wouldn’t give Iran the money until the four detained Americans were released. That’s a textbook definition of…ransom. Of course, Republicans are having a field day over this latest failure for Obama’s smart power diplomacy with a state sponsor of terror. The Senate GOP cut this video, where it pretty much lays out how the administration just went against its own policy regarding ransom for hostages. 

I mean this is an administration that couldn’t bring itself to call the Russian invasion of Ukraine...an actual invasion. They called it an “uncontested arrival.” They tried to spin the Iran payment as leverage, not ransom. A non-ransom leverage payment that had strings attached, with the most paramount being that they release the detained Americans before the can take control of the money.

Up is down. Black is white. The world is flat.

Here's The Movie About Barack and Michelle Obama's First Date

In news that doesn't sound at all like something produced by a North Korean propaganda outlet, the film adaptation of Barack and Michelle Obama's first date, titled "Southside With You," hits theaters this Friday.

Here's the trailer:

While I guess the movie looks...fine, I guess, this just seems also more than a little bit absurd. It's also very strange that this movie was filmed and will be released while the Obamas still reside in the White House. Why is there such a rush to try to put the Obama's legacy on film?

This is just a little bit creepy.

Don’t Mess With The Elderly: 91-Year-Old Detroit Concealed Carry Holder Defends Himself From Robber

Don’t mess with the elderly, especially those who are packing heat. One robber in the Detroit area learned that the hard way when he thought a 91-year-old would be easy pickings. Little did he know that he would end up with a gunshot wound to the throat; the police are treating this matter as an act of self-defense (via Detroit News):

A 91-year-old concealed pistol license holder shot a man who was attempting to rob him Monday in Eastpointe, according to police.

The victim was exiting his car around 10:15 a.m. and heading into the Rite Aid on Gratiot near Nine Mile when an unknown suspect in his late 20s approached, Sgt. Martin Campbell said.

“He attempted to rob (the victim) and (the victim) had a CPL and ended up shooting the suspect,” Campbell said. “It’s as simple as that.”

The would-be robber was struck in the neck and fled across Gratiot, where he was arrested by responding officers.

“Two detectives found him walking over there,” Campbell said. “He had a gunshot wound to the neck but he was talking and acting erratic.”

It’s situations like this that have caused an uptick in senior citizen participation regarding firearm training courses, obtaining carry permits, and buying guns.