ISIS Attacks Surge Even As Trump Boasts Of a ‘100%’ Defeated Caliphate

“ISIS is not dead,” said Robert Richer, the CIA’s deputy director of operations during the George W. Bush administration, using a common acronym for the Islamic State. “We destroyed the caliphate, but they’re now popping up in numerous places. Meanwhile, the worldwide coalition to fight ISIS doesn’t really exist anymore.”

Trump Makes Rare California Stop, Visits Newport Beach For Private Fundraiser


President Donald Trump made an approximately 21/2-hour visit to Orange County Sunday for an early afternoon private fundraiser at tech mogul Palmer Luckey’s Newport Beach estate.

The fundraiser consisted of Trump participating in a roundtable discussion with supporters, then making a speech, according to the White House. It was closed to reporters, like many high-priced fundraisers conducted by presidents of both parties.

Invitations for the fundraiser show tickets ranging from $2,800 for individual admission to $150,000 for a couple to attend and take a photo with the president. Ric Grenell, Trump’s former acting director of national intelligence, was also slated to attend the event.


Cornyn Says He Broke With Trump on Deficit, Border Wall, But Kept Opposition Private




U.S. Sen. John Cornyn acknowledged Friday that at times he has disagreed with President Trump on issues such as budget deficits and debt, tariffs and trade agreements and border security.

But, the senior Republican senator from Texas, who is being challenged by Democrat MJ Hegar, said he chose to work on those disagreements with the president’s staff in private discussions, rather than by publicly voicing his opposition.

Although polls show Cornyn with a small lead over Hegar, both candidates are vying for undecided voters during an extraordinary election season in which many once-solid Republican public office seats are now in reach for Democrats.

During a meeting with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram Editorial Board, Cornyn was asked if he and other Republicans regretted not pushing Trump to combat the COVID-19 virus more aggressively, or rein in some of his political stances that were unpopular or stood little chance of passing in Congress.

Cornyn initially described his relationship with Trump as “maybe like a lot of women who get married and think they’re going to change their spouse, and that doesn’t usually work out very well.”

Cornyn continued: “I think what we found is that we’re not going to change President Trump. He is who he is. You either love him or hate him, and there’s not much in between. What I tried to do is not get into public confrontations and fights with him because, as I’ve observed, those usually don’t end too well.”

Cornyn noted that his friend, former U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., who initially was on cordial terms with Trump’s White House, opted not to run for re-election in 2018 after clashing with Trump on issues such as a border wall.

Cornyn said he worked well with the president on judicial nominations, Hurricane Harvey relief, a U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade deal and tax cuts. In those situations, Cornyn said, he was comfortable praising Trump’s work publicly.

“But when I have had differences of opinion, which I have, (I) do that privately,” Cornyn said. “I have found that has allowed me to be much more effective, I believe, than to satisfy those who say I ought to call him out or get into a public fight with him.”

For example, Cornyn said he expressed concerns over budget deficits and debt with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, during discussions about COVID-19 stimulus aid.

Cornyn said he also disagreed with the way Trump handled trade agreements with China and other Asian countries. Trump in 2017 pulled the United States out of a Trans-Pacific Partnership, an agreement that would have expanded trade in 12 countries.

“I applaud him for standing up to China but, frankly, this idea that China is paying the price and we’re not paying the price here at home is just not true,” Cornyn said.

Cornyn also opposed taking money from the defense budget to build portions of a border wall, saying he is “very much a defense hawk” who disagreed with the use of national security funds for that purpose.



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He Makes it Into a Joke’: For Philly COVID-19 Patients, Trump’s Cavalier Attitude Stings



PHILADELPHIA — When President Donald Trump talks about his bout with coronavirus — and urges Americans to not let the pandemic that has killed more than 210,000 “dominate their lives” — Jesus Ortiz can hardly bring himself to listen.

Ortiz, 58, was diagnosed in May with COVID-19, and his experience couldn’t have been more different from the president’s.

Back then, at the height of the pandemic’s first wave in the Philadelphia region, testing backlogs meant Ortiz, an apartment building maintenance supervisor from Warminster, had to wait a week for his test results. As he waited, he grew sicker, struggling to breathe. It took two trips to an emergency room before he was admitted to a COVID-19 ward, he said.

Alone in the hospital, with no visitors allowed, Ortiz remembers asking a doctor if he could be treated with blood plasma from other COVID-19 patients, a therapy he had read about. He was told that it was in such short supply that it had to be conserved for the sickest patients, and bad as he felt, that didn’t yet include Ortiz.

Eventually, Ortiz did get both plasma and remdesivir — the antiviral medication that the president received right away during his stay at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center earlier this month. After more than a week in the hospital, Ortiz went home, 30 pounds lighter and still relying on supplemental oxygen.

Seeing the president speak about how easy his care and recovery were has stung Ortiz, who felt entirely alone as he grew sicker and demanded scarce treatments.

When the president tells Americans not to worry about the virus, “he makes it into a joke, as far as I’m concerned,” Ortiz said. “This is a life-threatening thing, for sure.”

Ortiz isn’t alone in his anger: Doctors, patients, and their advocates from around the region say Trump’s cavalier attitude toward the virus is clearly a dangerous message to precaution-weary Americans. But what’s more, his experience speaks to the vast social, racial, and economic inequities in American health care.

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IT NEEDS TO STOP!!!…… Whitmer Slams Trump Crowd Chanting ‘Lock Her Up’ & Says it Puts Her Family ‘In Danger’ – Days After Kidnap Plot Revealed



By The U.S. SUN

Speaking at his rally in Muskegon, Michigan, President Donald Trump said “hopefully you will be sending [Whitmer] packing soon,” which was followed by a chant of “lock her up” from the crowd.

Trump responded by saying “lock them all up.”

But the governor, who was targeted by at least six men with ties to the Boogaloo Boys movement, quickly clapped back on Twitter.

The Legal Reckoning Awaiting Donald Trump If He Loses The Election


If things don’t go Donald Trump’s way on Election Day, the President may face more serious matters than how to pack up the West Wing.

Without some of the protections afforded him by the presidency, Trump will become vulnerable to multiple investigations looking into possible fraud in his financial business dealings as a private citizen — both as an individual and through his company. He faces defamation lawsuits sparked by his denials of accusations made by women who have alleged he assaulted them, including E. Jean Carroll, the former magazine columnist who has accused him of rape. And then there are claims he corrupted the presidency for his personal profits.
As President, Trump has been able to block and delay several of these investigations and lawsuits — including a yearlong fight over a subpoena for his tax returns — in part because of his official position. Many of those matters have wound through the courts and will come to a head whether he is reelected or not.
But with the polls showing that Democratic rival Joe Biden is leading in the race, the stakes become much higher for Trump if he loses the election. A raft of legal issues, including a criminal investigation by New York prosecutors, will come into focus in the weeks after Election Day.
“In every regard, his leaving office makes it easier for prosecutors and plaintiffs in civil cases to pursue their cases against him,” said Harry Sandick, a former federal prosecutor in the Manhattan US attorney’s office. “For example, he is claiming a higher protection from subpoenas in the criminal cases and also in the congressional subpoena cases, [and that] is based largely on the fact that he is President.”
Some have suggested a formal apparatus for investigating Trump after he leaves office. Rep. Eric Swalwell, a California Democrat, has floated the creation of a “Presidential Crimes Commission,” made up of independent prosecutors who can examine “those who enabled a corrupt president,” as he put it in an August tweet. “Example 1: Sabotaging the mail to win an election.”
Subpoena for Trump tax returns heading back to Supreme Court after President dealt another setback

The most serious legal threat facing Trump is the Manhattan district attorney’s broad criminal investigation into the financial workings of the Trump Organization. Prosecutors have suggested in court filings that the investigation could examine whether the President and his company engaged in bank fraud, insurance fraud, criminal tax fraud and falsification of business records.

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‘N.Y. Post’ Scoop Driven by Ex-Hannity Producer, & Giuliani


The New York Post’s claims about Hunter Biden relied on Steve Bannon (left), Rudy Giuliani, and a heavy dose of assumptions.


It is a classic moment in the weeks before Election Day: a news outlet runs a front-page exclusive promising scandalous revelations about a big-ticket candidate.

This week, the New York Post published a story based on what it says are emails — “smoking gun” emails, it calls them — sent by a Ukrainian business executive to the son of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. The story fits snugly into a narrative from President Trump and his allies that Hunter Biden’s zealous pursuit of business ties abroad also compromised the former vice president.

Yet this was a story marked more by red flags than investigative rigor.

To start, the emails have not been verified as authentic. They were said to have been extracted from a computer assumed — but not proven — to have belonged to the younger Biden. They were said to have been given to the Post by Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, who is known for making discredited claims about the Bidens.

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Former White House Chief Of Staff Tells Friends That Trump ‘Is The Most Flawed Person’ He’s ever Met




Former White House chief of staff, retired Marine Gen. John Kelly, has told friends that President Donald Trump “is the most flawed person” he’s ever known.

“The depths of his dishonesty is just astounding to me. The dishonesty, the transactional nature of every relationship, though it’s more pathetic than anything else. He is the most flawed person I have ever met in my life,” the retired Marine general has told friends, CNN has learned.
The reporting comes from a new CNN special scheduled to air Sunday night, “The Insiders: A Warning from Former Trump Officials,” in which former senior administration officials — including former national security adviser John Bolton, former Health and Human Services scientist Rick Bright and former Department of Homeland Security general counsel John Mitnick — explain why they think the President is unfit for office.
Kelly’s sentiments about the President’s transactional nature and dishonesty have been shared by other former members of the Trump administration who also appear in the special.

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AP FACT CHECK: Rhetoric From Trump In The Non-Debate


WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden faced inquisitive voters on separate stages in different cities Thursday night in a substitute for the debate that was meant to be.

Here’s how some of the rhetoric compared with the facts in the prime-time events and a day of campaigning:


TRUMP, answering questions in Miami on NBC: “We had the greatest economy in the history of our country.”

THE FACTS: The numbers show it wasn’t the greatest in U.S. history.

Did the U.S. have the most jobs on record before the pandemic? Sure, the population had grown. The 3.5% unemployment rate before the recession was at a half-century low, but the percentage of people working or searching for jobs was still below a 2000 peak.

Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Romer looked at Trump’s economic growth record this month. Growth under Trump averaged 2.48% annually before the pandemic, only slightly better than the 2.41% gains achieved during Barack Obama’s second term. By contrast, the economic expansion that began in 1982 during Ronald Reagan’s presidency averaged 4.2% a year.

So Trump is wrong.



TRUMP: “When I see thousands of ballots dumped in a garbage can and they happen to have my name on it? I’m not happy about it.” — 

THE FACTS: Nobody has seen that except TRUMP. Contrary to Trump’s repeated, baseless attacks on voting security, voting and election fraud is vanishingly rare. No cases involving thousands of ballots dumped in the trash have been reported in this election.

Trump has cited a case of military ballots marked for him being thrown in the trash in Pennsylvania as evidence of a possible plot to steal the election. But Trump leaves out the details: County election officials say that the seven ballots, along with two unopened ones, were accidentally tossed in an elections office in a Republican-controlled county by a single contract worker and that authorities were swiftly called.

The Brennan Center for Justice in 2017 ranked the risk of ballot fraud at 0.00004% to 0.0009%, based on studies of past elections.

In the five states that regularly send ballots to all voters, there have been no major cases of fraud or difficulty counting the votes.


TRUMP: “Just the other day they came out with a statement that 85% of the people that wear masks catch it so … that’s what I heard and that’s what I saw.” — town-hall event in Miami.

TRUMP, on his rallies: “What I do is outside is a big thing. And if you look at those, people, they really are wearing masks. I’ll tell you, I looked last night in Iowa — there were many, many people wearing masks. But then you see CDC comes out with a statement that 85% of the people wearing masks catch it.” — Fox Business interview.

TRUMP, looking out over his crowd: “Look at all the masks. You know, they keep saying, ‘nobody wears a mask, wear the mask.’ Although then they come out with things today. Did you see CDC? That 85% of the people wearing a mask catch it, OK?” — remarks at rally during the day in Greenville, North Carolina.

THE FACTS: He’s botching the study’s findings, repeatedly. The study cited, by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, did not find that 85% of mask wearers catch COVID-19. If that were the case, the majority of Americans would be infected.

It found something quite different: that 85% of the small group of COVID-19 patients surveyed — about 150 on this question — reported they had worn a mask often or always around the time they would have become infected.

The group’s exposure to potentially infected people in the community varied. Most reported shopping or being in a home with multiple people. But they were twice as likely to have eaten at a restaurant, where masks are set aside for the meal, than were uninfected people in a control group.

Most studies have shown that wearing masks reduces the transmission of the virus by blocking respiratory droplets. Several studies have also shown that masks could offer some protection for the people who wear them.

The findings were in a CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, published last month.


TRUMP, reacting to the news that people associated with the Biden campaign on a recent flight with Harris tested positive for COVID-19: “We extend our best wishes, which is more than they did to me, but that’s OK.” — Greenville rally.

THE FACTS: That’s false.


Exclusive: Republican Sen. Sasse Says Trump ‘Kisses Dictators’ Butts’ and Mocks Evangelicals


By David M. Drucker  October 15, 2020

Republican Sen. Ben Sasse excoriated President Trump in a telephone conference call with constituents this week, saying he had mishandled the coronavirus response, “kisses dictators’ butts,” “sells out our allies,” spends “like a drunken sailor,” mistreats women, and trash-talks evangelicals behind their backs.

Trump has “flirted with white supremacists,” according to Sasse, and his family “treated the presidency like a business opportunity.” He said Trump could drive the Senate into the hand of the Democrats and cause permanent damage to the Republican Party.

Sasse, a possible GOP candidate for president in 2024, is up for reelection on Nov. 3 and is expected to cruise to victory.

In an audio clip of the call, obtained by the Washington Examiner, a female constituent asks Sasse to explain “your relationship with the president” and wonders, “Why do you have to criticize him so much?”

At first, Sasse focused on his points of agreement with Trump. But the senator soon began to unload, spending the majority of his nearly ten-minute answer assailing the president.


Sasse spokesman James Wegmann confirmed that his boss made the comments, saying the call occurred earlier this week.

“I don’t know how many more times we can shout this: Even though the Beltway is obsessing exclusively about the presidential race, control of the Senate is ten times more important,” he said in a statement to the Washington Examiner. “The fragile Senate seats that will determine whether Democrats nuke the Senate are the races Ben cares about, the races he’s working on, and the only races he’s talking about.”


In the call, Sasse said Trump refused to take COVID-19 seriously at the outset, treating it like a public relations crisis instead of a public health challenge.

Sasse began by criticizing the media. “In his partial defense here, I think that lots of the news media has pretended that COVID is literally the first public health crisis ever. And somehow, it’s Donald Trump’s fault. That’s not true. They just wanted to use it against him,” Sasse said.

And then he added: “But the reality is that he careened from curb to curb. First, he ignored COVID. And then he went into full economic shutdown mode. He was the one who said 10 to 14 days of shutdown would fix this. And that was always wrong. I mean, and so I don’t think the way he’s lead through COVID has been reasonable or responsible, or right.”

Sasse also explored Trump’s foreign policy and other issues.

And then he added: “But the reality is that he careened from curb to curb. First, he ignored COVID. And then he went into full economic shutdown mode. He was the one who said 10 to 14 days of shutdown would fix this. And that was always wrong. I mean, and so I don’t think the way he’s lead through COVID has been reasonable or responsible, or right.”

Sasse also explored Trump’s foreign policy and other issues.

Democratic Enthusiasm Propels Early Voting



WASHINGTON – With less than three weeks to go before Nov. 3, more than 14 million Americans have voted in the fall election, reflecting an extraordinary level of participation despite barriers erected by the coronavirus pandemic – and setting a trajectory that could result in the majority of voters casting ballots before Election Day for the first time in U.S. history.

In Georgia this week, voters waited as long as 11 hours to cast their ballots on the first day of early voting. In North Carolina, nearly 1 in 5 of roughly 500,000 who have returned mail ballots did not vote in the last presidential election. In Michigan, more than 1 million people – roughly one-fourth of total turnout in 2016 – have voted.

The picture is so stark that election officials across the country are reporting record early turnout, much of it in person, meaning that more results could be available on election night than previously thought.


Much of the early voting appears to be driven by heightened enthusiasm among Democrats. Of the roughly 3.5 million voters who have cast ballots in six states that provide partisan breakdowns, registered Democrats outnumber Republicans by roughly 2 to 1, according to a Washington Post analysis of data in Florida, Kentucky, Iowa, Maine, North Carolina and Pennsylvania.

Those who have voted include disproportionate numbers of Black voters and women, according to state data – groups that favor former vice president Joe Biden over President Donald Trump in recent polls.

Dozens of voters who have shown up on their states’ first day of early voting over the past several weeks have described a desire to cast their ballots at the first possible moment as a statement against the president.


“Last night felt like Christmas Eve,” said Tony Lewis, 39, who showed up at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville on Tuesday as polls opened at 8:30 a.m. for the first day of in-person voting. “I just wanted to get out and be one of the first ones to cast my vote to hopefully end the insanity we are living in under the current administration.”

Republicans say the heavy turnout shows that Democratic votes are coming in earlier but not necessarily in higher numbers in the end. The Trump campaign and other Republicans say that Biden might win the early vote, but that the president will catch up on Election Day among supporters who do not trust mail balloting.

Massachusetts’ Republican Governor ‘Cannot Support Donald Trump For President’

Massachusetts’ Republican governor is diverging from his party this election cycle.

In a Wednesday statement, Gov. Charlie Baker declared through a spokesperson that he “cannot support Donald Trump for president” and will “leave the election analysis to the pundits.” Baker didn’t say whether he’d support Democratic nominee Joe Biden in turn.



Baker also didn’t vote for Trump in 2016, saying he cast a blank ballot for the presidency for the first time that year. He said he had previously decided he couldn’t support Trump “for a number of reasons,” but said Hillary Clinton had “believability issues.”

Baker is a moderate Republican who has been surprisingly popular in the deep blue state of Massachusetts throughout his last five years in office. He has maintained one of the highest approval ratings of any governor in the country amid the COVID-19 pandemic, even topping Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-Mass.) support among Massachusetts Democrats in August……. Kathryn Krawczyk

Trump Headed For Trouble — And Not Changing Course




President Donald Trump is down in the polls, running out of time, and facing a resurgent coronavirus across the United States. Yet seemingly headed for defeat, he is doing nothing to change course.

Proud of his status as a non-politician who won the White House in his first shot, Trump brushes off polls ahead of November 3, preferring nostalgic reminiscences about his 2016 upset.

There’s no question that he still has the raw energy on stage of the candidate who surprised everyone to beat Hillary Clinton.

This week he began a punishing cycle of rallies, his first since recovering from hospitalization for Covid-19 at the start of October.

In Florida on Monday and Pennsylvania on Tuesday, he entertained large, enthusiastic crowds.

He even did a little boogie on stage to the thumping rhythm of the Village People song “YMCA,” perhaps buoyed by the lyrics of “I said, young man, pick yourself off the ground.”

On Tuesday in Johnstown, a small Pennsylvania town, he delivered his now well-known speech in the cold autumn air, warning apocalyptically of Democrats turning the United States into a “large-scale version of Venezuela.”

Just as he used to mock and insult Clinton, he mocked and insulted challenger Joe Biden.

“He has no idea what he is saying! How the hell do you lose to a guy like this?” he asked.

“He’s shot,” Trump said. “In his best of years, he was considered a dumb guy.”

The biggest issue of the day — Covid-19 and its more than 215,000 victims in the United States — was largely brushed off with typical Trump optimism.

He’d got over the virus himself, he said, and “the vaccines are coming soon.”

About his plans for a new four-year term, there was almost nothing other than the vague, patriotic climax to his stump speech which the crowds now know almost by heart.

“The best is yet to come,” he intoned. “We are going to keep on fighting, and we are going to keep on winning, wining, winning.”

– Political suicide? –

Trump often contrasts his enthusiastic events with the quieter, much smaller versions on the Biden campaign trail. But polls show Biden is more popular and the Democrat has chosen a low-key campaign in keeping with his message of responsibility during the pandemic.