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Thursday, December 22, 2016

From the desk of Senator Eckardt, Happy Holidays!!


Tesla to Start Charging Idling Fees for Superchargers

The concept of Tesla’s nationwide Supercharger Network is a great one. A grid of charging stations that reaches across the country, providing convenient access to electricity for each and every Tesla owner. Originally, it was a free service that provided a truly unique feature to the company’s customers; however, things just got a little more expensive.

Tesla recently announced that they will be issuing an idle fee to owners who leave their vehicle plugged in after their charge cycle is complete. The company took this as a measure to cut back on unnecessary energy usage and charging port occupancy. Tesla released a statement saying “We designed the Supercharger network to enable a seamless, enjoyable road trip experience. Therefore, we understand that it can be frustrating to arrive at a station only to discover fully charged Tesla cars occupying all the spots …” In efforts to cut back on this problem, owners will now be charged $.40 per minute after their Tesla is fully charged.


Obama: ‘This is going to be a browner country’

Regardless of what President-elect Donald Trump’s plans are for immigration, President Barack Obama says there will be “inevitable” changes to the demographics of the United States.

“If you stopped all immigration today, just by virtue of birth rates, this is going to be a browner country,” Obama told NPR’s Steve Inskeep in an interview that aired Monday. “And if we’re not thinking right now about how we make sure that next generation is getting a good education and are instilled with a common creed and the values that make America so special and are cared for and nurtured and loved the way every American child is treated, then we’re not going to be as successful.”

Obama said it’s natural for the nation to have “some growing pains” because of the substantial changes to the world during his eight years in office:


How many U.S. adults are transgender?

One of the first comprehensive surveys on the subject estimates that about 1.3 million American adults currently identify as transgender.

The new data is based on answers to a 2014 U.S. government survey of more than 151,000 adults conducted across 19 states.

Transgender people identify with or express a gender identity that differs from the gender they were born with. Researchers say that 0.53 percent of respondents — about one in every 189 U.S. adults — answered “yes” to the question, “Do you consider yourself to be transgender?”

Transgender individuals were more likely to identify as male-to-female (0.28 percent of adults surveyed) than female-to-male (0.16 percent), the study found.


Trump Responds To Russian Ambassador Assassination Like A TRUE Leader – Calls It What It Is!

The terrorist attack yesterday shocked everyone. Violence seemed to simultaneously erupt across the world. And the ensuing results perfectly depicts why our nation might be getting exactly what it needs in the upcoming president, Donald Trump. For years, our president has been unwilling to label the terrorist groups that have continually attacked the free world for what they are.

Radical Islam is as much a threat to true Islam as it is to democracy and Christianity. We cannot help heal a sickness if we are unwilling to admit what it is.

President-elect Donald Trump was not afraid to say what he meant when he boldly called for the immediate “universal condemnation” of the “radical Islamic terrorist” who is responsible for the assassination of Russia’s ambassador to Turkey on Monday.

His statement was exactly what needed to be said and it was exactly what needed to be heard.

“Today we offer our condolences to the family and loved ones of Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrei Karlov, who was assassinated by a radical Islamic terrorist,” Trump said in a short statement.

“The murder of an ambassador is a violation of all rules of civilized order and must be universally condemned,” the president-elect added.


Brit Hume: Detroit had 782 more votes than voters (and Hillary lost anyway)

Why am I not surprised that the Democrats cheated in Detroit and managed to STILL lose? That’s a serious accomplishment.

Well, not really, but I have to admit that it’s humorous.

Despite the vehement denials by the left that voter fraud exists, we have proof that fraudulent Democrats were counted in a county Hillary won handily. Though the total is a mere 782 more votes than people, the fact that there is even 1 means that they are wrong.

Brit Hume posted the story on Twitter and the Internet responded in a big way.


Rising Gas Prices May Be Affecting Holiday Travel Plans

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Those who’ve been to the gas station in the last several weeks, may have noticed rising gas prices.

Ordinarily, this is the time of year, many of drivers can see lower prices at the pump, but instead, motorists are seeing one of the largest increases in gas price. But, it’s a matter of supply and demand, and the timing could not be worse, as millions are expected to travel for the holiday season.

“One remembers a couple of years ago this would have been cheap,” says motorist Chuck Kerr.

“Just overnight $2.29, $2.35, unbelievable,” says Joe Henry.


Detectives Investigate Hate-Based Vandalism At Maryland Elementary School

Detectives from the Montgomery County Police Department – 3rd District Investigative Section are investigating a hate-based vandalism to the Sligo Creek Elementary School located at 500 Schuyler Road in Silver Spring.

On Wednesday, December 21 at approximately 2:46 p.m., 3rd District officers responded to the Sligo Creek Elementary School for the report of a vandalism to the school. School administrative staff stated to officers that a student reported to them that the words “kill all whites” had been written on the wall of a bathroom stall inside of a boys’ restroom.

Anyone with information about this vandalism and/or the suspect(s) is asked to contact the 3rd District Investigative Section at 240-773-6870. For those who wish to remain anonymous, Crime Solvers of Montgomery County is offering a reward of up to $10,000 for any information that leads to the arrest of the suspect(s). Tipsters can call Crime Solvers of Montgomery County toll-free at 1-866-411 TIPS (8477).

News They Can Use

Md. Police Drug Lab Supervisor Charged With Drug Possession

MILLERSVILLE, Md. (AP) — An administrator at a police drug lab in Maryland has been accused of stealing opioid painkillers from a box where people can drop off their unwanted prescription medications.

Anne Arundel County police said in a statement that 48-year-old Annette Box was arrested Wednesday and faces numerous charges. Police say investigators traced drugs found in her car to the drop box.

As a result of her arrest, police say the drug lab’s activities have been temporarily suspended. Police Chief Timothy Altomare has asked the Drug Enforcement Administration to do an audit of the drugs in the department’s possession.


Md. officials want to test driverless cars on Interstate 95

HANOVER, Md. (AP) — Driverless cars could be coming to Interstate 95 if Maryland transportation officials have their way.

The Maryland Department of Transportation announced Wednesday that it has asked the federal Transportation Department to use the I-95 corridor to test autonomous vehicles.

Federal officials are looking for several “proving grounds” around the country for self-driving cars. Maryland officials have suggested using I-95 between the University of Maryland to the south and Aberdeen Proving Ground to the north.

The first group of testing areas for driverless cars will be announced in early 2017. If Maryland is chosen, the earliest I-95 would see driverless cars would be 2018.

The Best History of How We Got High Medical Prices and Obamacare

WCSO Press Release 12-22-16

Incident: DUI / Hit and Run
Date of Incident: 21 December 2016
Location: 6000 block of Heron Grove Ct., Parsonsburg, MD
Suspect: Jonah Brook Cramer, 37, Parsonsburg, MD
Narrative: On 21 December 2016 at 4:48 PM a deputy responded to a reported single vehicle crash in the 6000 block of Heron Grove Court. Upon arrival the deputy found an F-150 that had crashed into a large tree and discovered that the operator had left the scene.
The suspected operator, Jonah Cramer, was located walking on a nearby roadway and was observed to have injuries consistent with being in a collision. The deputy observed that Cramer had an odor of an alcoholic beverage about him and other physical attributes that caused the deputy to suspect that Cramer was under the influence of alcohol. During the investigation of possible driving under the influence, Cramer refused to submit to any testing or to sign any relevant paperwork.
The deputy charged Cramer with DUI and Leaving the Scene of an Accident and released him pending a future court appearance.
Charges: Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol and Leaving the Scene of an Accident

Incident: Interfere With an Arrest
Date of Incident: December 20, 2016
Location: 800 block of Booth Street, Salisbury, MD
Suspect: Taniesha Sabree Collick, 28, Salisbury, MD
Narrative: On 20 December 2016 at 1:19 PM a deputy responded to an address in the 800 block of Booth Street where that deputy made an arrest in an assault case. Following that arrest when the deputy exited the residence with Carlesha Wingate, another subject identified as Taniesha Collick approached the deputy and wanted to discuss the merits of arresting Wingate. The deputy told Collick that he would speak to her after he placed Wingate into the patrol vehicle and requested that Collick back up. Collick did not back up, instead she continued her inquiry into Wingate’s arrest and interfered with the deputy’s ability to complete his arrest of Wingate.
The deputy placed Collick under arrest and she was transported to the Central Booking Unit where she was processed and taken in front of the District Court Commissioner. Following an initial appearance, Collick was detained in the Detention Center in lieu of $5,000.00 bond.
Charges: Interfere with an Arrest

Incident: Assault
Date of Incident: December 20, 2016
Location: 800 block of Booth Street, Salisbury, MD
Suspect: Carlesha Andrea Wingate, 26, Salisbury, MD
Narrative: On 20 December 2016 at 1:19 PM a deputy responded to a reported disturbance at a residence in the 800 block of Booth Street. Upon arrival, the deputy heard sounds coming from inside the residence that caused the deputy to believe an assault was in progress inside the residence. The deputy entered the residence in time to witness an assault against a male victim by Carlesha Wingate.
The deputy placed Wingate under arrest and transported her to the Central Booking Unit where she was processed and taken in front of the District Court Commissioner. Following an initial appearance, the Commissioner detained Wingate in the Detention Center in lieu of $5,000.00 bond.
Charges: Assault 2nd Degree

Maryland School Food Grades are out: How did your district do?

SPD Partnering with Pohanka of Salisbury as they deliver Christmas to Salisbury Middle School secretary

It’s a Landslide: Maryland voters endorse shared parenting

A recent survey of Maryland voters reveals overwhelming support for shared parenting following divorce.

Between August 5th and 7th, Public Policy Polling conducted a survey of 580 Old Line State voters of their attitudes toward shared parenting and Maryland law on child custody. A whopping 79% of respondents said they thought fathers and mothers should receive equal treatment by family courts in child custody decisions. Plus, 63% said they favored changing state law to “create a starting point whereby joint legal and physical custody – commonly referred to as shared parenting – for approximately equal periods of time is viewed as being in the best interests of the child.” Only 15% said they opposed such a change.

Not only that, but support for a change in the law crossed all boundaries of gender, race and political persuasion. Substantial majorities of men and women, Republicans and Democrats, whites, African-Americans and other races support reform of child custody laws. By any definition, that’s a landslide victory for shared parenting.

That’s right in line with similar surveys in Canada and the United Kingdom that consistently find 70% – 80% of respondents favoring shared parenting.


Christmas blizzard to evolve across north-central US

A potent storm will cause dangerous blizzard conditions, resulting in major travel disruptions, over the central United States during Christmas weekend.

A storm more similar to November or March will swing northeastward over the northern Plains during Christmas Day. The storm will deliver everything from a wintry mix and a blizzard to drenching rain and severe thunderstorms to portions of the central United States.

After departing the Intermountain West with moderate snow and slippery travel conditions, the storm will emerge over the High Plains and begin to strengthen.


SPD Press Release - (Commercial Armed Robbery Arrest) 12-22-16

All aboard the high-speed rail

The Hogan administration secured a $27.8 million federal grant last month to study the feasibility of a magnetic levitation (MagLev) train between Washington, D.C. and Baltimore. The grant can be used for planning and engineering costs.

MagLev trains are propelled through a guideway by powerful magnets. The magnetic force also lifts the train above the surface to reduce friction, allowing smoother, quieter rides and a top-end speed of more than 300 MPH.

Gov. Larry Hogan rode a MagLev train in Japan in 2015 and became convinced this technology can help revolutionize travel in the Baltimore-Washington corridor and can serve as the first phase of a high-speed rail to New York and Boston.

This isn’t the first attempt to bring MagLev to the Baltimore-Washington Corridor. MagLev originally received funding from the Clinton administration that was gladly accepted by then-Gov. Paris Glendenning. Maryland Democrats seemed to favor the project.


What's Happening 12-22-16

Let us know what is happening in the area!  The Good, the bad and the ugly!   Are you ready for Christmas?

What the warrant application for Weiner's laptop says about FBI investigation

The FBI was trying to get a look at thousands of Hillary Clinton's emails on former congressman Anthony Weiner's computer partly to see if anyone had hacked in to steal classified information, according to court documents unsealed Tuesday.

The FBI was trying to get a look at thousands of Hillary Clinton's emails on disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner's computer partly to see if anyone had hacked in to steal classified information, according to court documents unsealed Tuesday.

Investigating possible hacking appeared to be a secondary rationale for the email search, which FBI Director James Comey launched in the waning days of the presidential election.

When the FBI asked a magistrate judge in New York to issue a search warrant for Weiner's computer on Oct. 30, an agent spent pages describing concerns it might contain evidence Clinton had mishandled classified information.


New York Times Gives Valuable Publicity to White Nationalism

Paper has published two-dozen articles about tiny band of racists since election

The New York Times has published more than two-dozen articles about the “alt-right” and white nationalist movements since the November elections, an invaluable signal boost for the tiny coalition of racists.

The Times has published articles about an “energized” far-right for over a year, although it ramped up this publicity blitz in November after the election of Donald Trump and appointment of Breitbart News executive Stephen Bannon as presidential counselor.

The articles typically refer to the alt-right as an attractive and growing political force—valuable promotional copy for a movement that numbers only in the “thousands,” as its leaders admit.


O'Reilly: The Left Wants to Take Power Away From 'White Establishment'

Fox News host Bill O'Reilly said liberals are against the Electoral College because they want the "white establishment" to lose power.

In his "Talking Points" segment Tuesday night on "The O'Reilly Factor," he said that without the Electoral College, the only votes that count would be those in large states.

"If the Electoral College were abolished, presidential candidates could simply campaign in the nation's largest states and cities — New York, LA, Chicago, Houston — and rack up enough votes to pretty much win any election.

"That's what the left wants," he continued. "That's what they want, because in the large urban areas and blue states like New York and California, minorities are substantial."

"Look at the landscape — Philadelphia, Dallas/Fort Worth, Miami — in all of these places, the minority vote usually goes heavily to the Democrats. Add to that New York City, LA, Chicago, San Francisco, you don't really have a national election anymore, do you? You have targeted populations."

O'Reilly said racism is behind the call to remove the Electoral College.

Racism against whites is a central tenet of liberal views, O'Reilly continued and "very few commentators will tell you that the heart of liberalism in America today is based on race.


Poll: Democratic Women Most Likely to Block or Unfriend Someone over Politics

Democrats are more likely than Republicans and Independents to block or unfriend someone on social media over politics, according to a nonpartisan survey published Monday from the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI).

Twenty-four percent of Democrats unfriended or blocked someone on social media because of political posts, according to the survey results. However, only nine percent of Republicans and nine percent of Independents said they did the same.

“Political liberals are also far more likely than conservatives to say they removed someone from their social media circle due to what they shared online (28% vs. 8%, respectively),” PRRI explains of its survey. “Eleven percent of moderates say they blocked, unfollowed, or unfriended someone due to what they posted online.”

More here

NC fails to repeal 'bathroom bill' that limits LGBT protection

A deal has fallen apart to undo the North Carolina law known as the "bathroom bill" in a sign of the state's bitter political divide.

The state's legislature was called into a special session Wednesday to consider repealing the law known as HB2 after months of pressure, including lost jobs and canceled sporting events and concerts.

But the Republican-controlled legislature showed once again that it preferred to go its own way.


Sheriff Richard Jones, Ohio elector, sets anti-Trump letters on fire

An Ohio sheriff and elector is causing a stir on social media after he rounded up all of the anti-Donald Trump letters he’d received since the election and then filmed himself setting them on fire following Monday’s Electoral College vote.

Butler County Sheriff Richard Jones, an outspoken supporter of Mr. Trump, was one of 18 electors who voted for the the president-elect this week in Columbus.

Sheriff Jones said he and his wife later celebrated the vote by burning the “thousands” of letters he received from across the country by people urging him not to vote for Mr. Trump, a local CBS News affiliate reported.

“You see I got a lot of letters to burn,” the sheriff said in a video he posted to Twitter, The Blaze reported. “I’m going to be burning letters all night.”


Caddell: 'Grace, That's What's Missing' as Obamas Prepare to Leave White House

Political pollster and analyst Pat Caddell told Breitbart News Daily SiriusXM host Alex Marlow on Monday that, concerning the Obamas leaving the White House, “We are watching this ending here. It’s not quite as bad as the Clintons … but the lack of grace, that’s what’s missing here.”

Caddell’s remarks came after hearing Michelle Obama’s now infamous comments to Oprah Winfrey:

The First Lady was asked by Oprah Winfrey whether she thinks that her husband’s administration had achieved his promise of hope for America.

“Yes. I do,” she said. “Because we feel the difference now. See, now, we are feeling what not having hope feels like. You know. Hope is necessary. It’s a necessary concept and Barack didn’t just talk about hope because he thought it was just a nice slogan to get votes. He and I and so many believe, what else do you have when you do not have hope?”


Black Man Burned African-American Church, Painted ‘Vote Trump’ On The Walls

A black man has been arrested and charged with burning an African-American church in Greenville, Miss. last month and defacing its outer walls with “Vote Trump” graffiti.

The Mississippi state police arrested Andrew McClinton, 45, on Wednesday and charged him with first-degree arson of a place of worship, Warren Strain, a spokesman with the Mississippi Department of Public Safety told The Daily Caller.

McClinton allegedly set first to Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church, where he is a member, on Nov. 1, a week before the election. The fire destroyed 80 percent of the church. A GoFundMe account raised more than $240,000 to repair the facility.

The attack, which was investigated by local and state authorities as well as the FBI, was widely attributed by media outlets to Trump supporters. The Atlantic, to cite one example, published an article entitled “A Black Church Burned in the Name of Trump.”


Obama's Protection Does Little to Ease Women's Health Fears

Like much of the president's policies, his most recent rule on funding for abortion providers may not matter once Donald Trump takes the White House.

To reduce the impact that Republican lawmakers can have on abortion, President Obama is using protection. With the stroke of a pen last week, he finalized a rule that will prohibit states from withholding federal funding from clinics just because they offer abortions.

But while advocates of women's health and reproductive rights celebrated Obama’s move, most still fear how abortion clinics will weather a Trump administration.

“We are deeply concerned that there will be nothing stopping the new Congress from disproving the new rule," said Audrey Sandusky, communications director for the National Family Planning and Reproductive Health Association. "They only need a simple majority to block it, and we believe this regulation is one that Congress will."


Tomi Lahren - Christmas in Berlin | Final Thoughts

Kid-preneur Works To Help Maryland Veterans

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — It’s the season of giving and one 5-year-old from Maryland is leading way.
Tyler Stallings is making sure that homeless veterans have something this holiday season.

He’s a 5-year-old in a cape, bringing holiday cheer, his big heart and lots of gifts.

“So, the reason why bought all these boxes right here is, because I want to remember veterans. It’s really important to remember veterans because they served the military and they help the whole country,” says TylerStallingss, Give Back to Veterans’ Day.


Beheaded, Castrated Man Found Outside Walmart Store

Authorities continue to look into the beheading and castration of an Oklahoma man whose body was discovered behind a Walmart in New Mexico.

The body was discovered over the weekend behind a supermarket in Albuquerque, New Mexico, a prepared statement from the local police department revealed.

Since the murder, authorities have been able to identify the victim as 42-year-old Clifford Miller by running his fingerprints through law enforcement databases.

Miller has a history of drug charges including a 1995 incident for cultivating marijuana, Albuquerque’s Channel 14 News reported. According to the local station, local police stated that they have not been able to confirm a motive but are looking at the possibility that the murder could be tied to Mexican drug cartels.



In 2016, the winter solstice date is December 21. This is the astronomical start of winter in the Northern Hemisphere. Enjoy our solstice facts, folklore, and more!


Winter solstice is the day with the fewest hours of sunlight during the whole year. In the Northern Hemisphere, it always occurs around December 21 or 22. (In the Southern Hemisphere, it is around June 20 or 21.)

In 2016, the winter solstice begins at:

Wednesday, December 21, 2016 at 10:44 UTC

Wednesday, December 21, 2016 at 5:44 am EST

The word solstice comes from the Latin words for “sun” and “to stand still.” In the Northern Hemisphere, as summer advances to winter, the points on the horizon where the Sun rises and sets advance southward each day; the high point in the Sun’s daily path across the sky, which occurs at local noon, also moves southward each day.

At the winter solstice, the Sun’s path has reached its southernmost position. The next day, the path will advance northward. However, a few days before and after the winter solstice, the change is so slight that the Sun’s path seems to stay the same, or stand still. The Sun is directly overhead at “high-noon” on Winter Solstice at the latitude called the Tropic of Capricorn.


Conway to move to Washington, keep working for Trump

Donald Trump senior adviser Kellyanne Conway confirmed to Fox News on Tuesday that she’ll move with her family to Washington, D.C., to take a job in support of the president-elect – either inside or outside his administration.

“My family is going to move to Washington, D.C., and I will either stay outside and run the political super-structure, or I will go into the West Wing and take a position right next to the president,” Conway, who ran Trump’s campaign, told Fox News’ “Happening Now.”

“I just want to find my best and highest use,” she said.


Mississippi church member charged in 'Vote Trump' arson

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — A Mississippi man with a prior criminal record was arrested Wednesday in the burning of an African-American church that was spray-painted with the words "Vote Trump," and the church's bishop said the man is a member of the congregation.


The state fire marshal said investigators do not believe the fire was politically motivated.

Andrew McClinton, 45, of Leland, Mississippi, is scheduled to make an initial court appearance Thursday in Greenville — the city where Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church was burned and vandalized Nov. 1, a week before the presidential election.


Donald Trump’s win emboldens Christmas display proponents

Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad joined Christian leaders and residents at an event last week to celebrate the first ever display of a traditional Nativity scene inside the state Capitol in Des Moines.

Five days later, members of the Freedom From Religion Foundation were on hand to install a secular display of their own — a metal cutout featuring the Founding Fathers and the Statue of Liberty gazing down at a manger holding the Bill of Rights.

Equal access to the Capitol for nonreligious displays or those celebrating other religions is what establishes the legal grounds for this Christmas Nativity. But in towns across the country, battles rage each holiday season over what sort of religious displays are allowed in public spaces — ranging from “A Charlie Brown Christmas” poster in a Texas school to a cross atop an Indiana town’s Christmas tree.

Proponents of religious displays, who have long been rankled by attempts to push religious expression out of the public sphere, hope Donald Trump’s election will herald new enthusiasm for Christmas cheer. The president-elect early on promised to bring back use of the greeting “Merry Christmas,” eschewing the religion-neutral phrase “Happy Holidays.”


Actresses Walk Out of Hillary Clinton TV Ad Shoot - OUCH

Growing list of post-election 'hate crimes' turn out to be hoaxes

Since the election victory of Donald Trump, numerous stories have surfaced about hate crimes allegedly tied to supporters of the businessman or to his rhetoric, some true and many not.

Although the Southern Poverty Law Center reports that there have been hate crimes since the election, a number of the incidents have been disproven or shown to be hoaxes or ill-timed jokes. Here are some noteworthy ones.

A Muslim teenager from Long Island by the name of Yasmin Seweid told authorities that she was harassed on the subway by men who yelled "Donald Trump!" while trying to remove her hijab. Within two weeks, the police said that she admitted she was lying because she broke her curfew. She now faces charges of filing and false report.

Immediately after the election, a Muslim woman in Louisiana claimied that she was attacked and had her hijab ripped off. In a statement released not long after that, the Lafayette Police Departmenet said that while investigating the incident, the woman "admitted that she fabricated the story about her physical attack as well as the removal of her hijab and wallet by two white males."


Speaking Of 'Fake News'!! Rachel Maddow Was So Happy Spewing Out Fake Polls!!

Worcester County Sheriff’s Office Press Release - Fatal Accident

On December 22, 2016 around 2:30 am the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office along with the Girdletree Volunteer Fire Company, Pocomoke City EMS responded to a motor vehicle crash on Onley Road, Girdletree Maryland.

Responding units located a 2003 Chevrolet that had left the road and overturned causing the driver to be ejected. The driver, Anthony Arsenault Jr. 37 of Pocomoke Md., was pronounced deceased on scene.

A passenger, Amy Lynn Liddle, 28, Pocomoke Md., was transported to Peninsula Regional Medical Center due to unspecified injuries.

The investigation is being conducted by the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office Crash Reconstruction Unit. Alcohol and Speed are factors in the crash. Anyone with any information about this crash is asked to contact Deputy Kenneth Reed of the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office at 410-632-1111.

Obama Admin Keeping Syrian Refugee Vetting Details Classified

Admin hiding details of vetting from American public while moving in refugees

The Obama administration is keeping details about how it is vetting Syrian refugees for terrorism ties classified, drawing concerns from Congress that the administration is using a flawed screening process that expedites the timeframe needed to fully vet foreign individuals, according to new congressional communications obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.

Rep. Sean Duffy (R., Wis.) is petitioning the Obama administration to publicly disclose the vetting process and explain how officials can ensure in an expedited timeframe that Syrians admitted into the United States do not have ties to terrorism, according to a letter sent by Duffy to the White House.

The Obama administration has repeatedly shortened the timeframe allocated to vet these refugees for terrorism, with checks now taking less than three months despite warnings from security officials who have asked for up to two years to perform the necessary background checks.

Duffy is additionally petitioning President-elect Donald Trump to pause the refugee resettlement program until U.S. security officials across the government can guarantee that all Syrians relocated to the United States do not have ties to terrorism.


Boeing CEO says he'll build Air Force Ones for less than $4 billion after Trump meeting

Boeing will build the new Air Force One for less than $4 billion, the CEO told reporters Wednesday after meeting with President-elect Trump.

Dennis Muilenburg, the Boeing CEO, praised Trump for his "business head" and said the two had a very productive meeting where they discussed how the country could build two new Air Force One planes for less than the $4 billion, which Trump criticized on Twitter this month.

"We're going to get it done for less than that," Muilenburg said. "I was able to give the president-elect my personal commitment on behalf of the Boeing Company. This is a business that's important to us. We work on Air Force One because it's important to our country and we're going to make sure that he gets the best capability and that it's done affordably."

When asked about the timeline, Muilenburg said "that's what we're going to work on together."


Ed Klein: Hillary's Delusion: 'I'm Going to Run Again in 2020'

Hillary Clinton intends to keep her campaign organization together for the next four years and run again for president in 2020.

“She’s convinced that, sooner than later, the voters will come to their senses and realize they made a horrible mistake by putting [Donald] Trump in the White House,” a source close to Hillary told Ed Klein Confidential. “She’s sure the voters will beg her to get in the race and she says, ‘I’m going to run again in 2020.’”

Not all her advisers agree. In fact, several of them believe Hillary is in a bad way—deeply depressed, drinking too much, and delusional about her chances of making a successful run for the White House four years from now when she’ll be 73 and in shaky health.

But these advisers are afraid to dash Hillary’s presidential dreams and send her into an even deeper depression.


Rollins' future unclear after convictions

ELKTON — After being convicted of two misdemeanors last week, Cecil County State’s Attorney Ellis Rollins’ future as the county’s top prosecutor may hinge on a single vague sentence in the state’s constitution.

According to Article V, Section 7, of the Maryland State Constitution, state’s attorney are subject to removal for “incompetency, willful neglect of duty, or misdemeanor in office, on conviction in a Court of Law, or by a vote of two-thirds of the Senate, on the recommendation of the Attorney-General.”

But no one’s quite sure how to interpret that sentence, including the Office of the Maryland Attorney General, the state’s chief legal officer. The Whig asked the Attoney General’s office for clarification concerning that statute on Tuesday. But as of Thursday evening, nearly 48 hours later, the office said it was still examining the statute and couldn’t comment yet.

Rollins, 61, was convicted last week of one count each of disorderly conduct and indecent exposure stemming from several incidences on June 22 during which he suggestively danced naked and masturbated directly in front of the sliding glass door of his high-rise Ocean City hotel room. He was found not guilty of two identical charges stemming from incidents that were alleged to have happened the day before.


"Donald Trump Will Never..." Oh, Wait!! Cut, Cut, Cut!! Can We Do A Retake??

Pregnant Inmates Sue Over 'Cruel, Unusual,' Solitary Confinement

Five pregnant women incarcerated in Western Pennsylvania have sued after being placed in solitary confinement. The federal lawsuit, filed Monday, alleged that the women in Allegheny County Jail in Pittsburgh were punished for minor, nonviolent infractions and held for up to 22 days each.

"Anecdotally, they're using [solitary confinement] as the first and last resort for discipline or to express disappointment," the lead attorney in the lawsuit, Bret Grote, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

One woman stated she had been placed in solitary confinement for possessing a book containing pictures and envelopes. Another said she was confined for having three pairs of shoes instead of the allowed two. None of the infractions were violent, the Gazette reported.

The lawsuit alleged cruel and unusual punishment and due process violations and demanded access to adequate prenatal care as well as a complete end to solitary confinement for pregnant women. It also asked for fair hearings before any prisoner can be placed in confinement.


As Boston bombing movie opens, officer's family seeks recognition

BOSTON – As the new Mark Wahlberg film "Patriots Day" about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing premieres on Wednesday in Boston, the mayor and others are pressing for recognition for a police officer who died a year after being wounded in a confrontation with the suspects.

Officer Dennis "D.J." Simmonds was injured when a pipe bomb exploded near him days after the bombing. The explosive device was thrown by brothers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in Watertown on April 19, 2013, as they tried to escape. A year later, Simmonds, 28, suffered a fatal brain aneurysm while working out at the Boston Police Academy gym.

The state retirement board later awarded the Simmonds family a $150,000 line-of-duty benefit after a medical panel found that the aneurysm most likely was related to the injuries he suffered during the confrontation with the bombers.


Gov. Chris Christie Tweets Up a Storm After 'Revenge Bill' Fails in New Jersey Legislature

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie unleashed his inner pit bull Tuesday on Twitter after the Legislature shelved his bill to yank millions of dollars in ads from state newspapers.

The measure was dubbed Christie's "revenge" against newspapers that aggressively covered Bridgegate — the investigation that led to theconvictions of two allies who conspired to cause a traffic jam on the George Washington Bridge in 2013 to punish a Democratic mayor who didn't endorse the governor for re-election.

The bill would have repealed the state law requiring legal notices to be printed in newspapers, clearing the way for the lucrative ads to move online.

Christie has denied knowing about the bridge scheme in advance and insisted that the bill had nothing to do with Bridgegate, saying it was first introduced in 2010.

But lawmakers weren't buying it — the measure was put on hold, perhaps indefinitely, on Monday — and neither were hundreds of residents who flooded the state Capitol with angry calls, according to several state newsoutlets.

Legislative Republicans said the bill could be revived in a later session, but the delay infuriated the famously combustible Christie, who launched a Twitter offensive Tuesday against Democrats who opposed it and big newspaper companies.

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Robert Durst Prosecutors Want Old Killing as Evidence in New Murder Trial

The dismemberment of Morris Black could come back to haunt Robert Durst.

Prosecutors hope to use the 2001 killing of Black in Texas as evidence against Durst when he goes on trial this summer for the 2000 slaying of his close friend Susan Berman in Los Angeles.

In a footnote to court papers filed Monday, they say both crimes were rooted in the same impulse: staying a step ahead of investigators looking into the 1982 disappearance of his wife Kathie.

Prosecutors said that after the Kathie Durst case was reopened in 2000, the real-estate scion embarked on an extraordinary journey to evade law-enforcement.


4 bodies found at property of retired N.Y. cop

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — Four bodies believed to be the missing men allegedly killed by retired Briarcliff Manor cop Nicholas Tartaglione during a busted drug deal in April were recovered Tuesday on property he rented in Orange County.

Chester police Chief Peter Graziano confirmed the recovery and said the bodies were being taken to the county medical examiner's office for positive identification.

Tartaglione, 49, was arrested Monday on drug conspiracy charges accusing him of killing the four in April. On Tuesday, state police and the FBI converged on the property on Old Mountain Road in Otisville to search for their remains.


Montgomery Co. school janitor accused of sexually assaulting 6-year-old

WASHINGTON — Police arrested a Montgomery County school’s janitor accused of sexually assaulting a 6-year-old student last month.

Ronald Greene, 54, was charged Tuesday with one count of second-degree sexual offense after police say he sexually assaulted a girl at Gaithersburg Elementary School.

The 6-year-old victim told detectives Greene sexually assaulted her while he was cleaning the girls’ bathroom on a school day in November, said Sgt. Rebecca Innocenti of the Montgomery County Police Department.

The victim told police Greene grabbed her from behind and placed his hand under her clothing, according to charging documents.




The Worcester County Sheriff’s is investigating a report of Police impersonation. On December 21, 2016 at 10:45 pm a female reported being stopped by a sedan with red and blue flashing lights on Route 12 in the area of Carmean Rd just north of Snow Hill. The suspect told her she had been speeding and demanded her driver’s license and registration. The female became suspicious when she noticed his badge only said “POLICE” and did not have an agency name or other familiar identifiers for police officers. She described the suspect as a white male approximately 5’6” and heavy set. He was wearing a brown button up shirt with the badge on his left chest. The female sped off possibly running over his foot. Anyone with information about this incident or who may have also been stopped in this area is asked to contact the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office at 410-632-1112.

The investigation is ongoing. We will update when any additional information is determined.

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Volkswagen To Buy Back, Fix 83K 3.0-Liter Vehicles In Second “Dieselgate” Settlement

A day after reports surfaced that Volkswagen was in talks with federal regulators to reach a second $1 billion settlement stemming from its “dieselgate” scandal, the Environmental Protection Agency, along with the Department of Justice and state of California, announced a deal in which the carmaker will buy back or fix 83,000 3.0-liter VW, Audi, and Porsche vehicles equipped with so-called “defeat devices” that skirt federal emissions standards. 

White House Report: Future Dominated By Artificial Intelligence Brings Productivity And Inequality

From talking speakers and virtual assistants to self-driving cars, artificial intelligence is slowly becoming part of our lives. As progress continues and computer programs are able to perform more human jobs, how can we protect people from being displaced from the job market and from worsening economic inequality that might come from rapid technological change? 

US Population Grows At Slowest Pace Since The Great Depression; Residents Flee Illinois Again

According to data released by the US Census, in 2016 the U.S. population grew at the lowest rate since the Great Depression, while the state of New York shrank for the first time in a decade. The biggest loser, again, was Illinois which shrank for a third consecutive year, losing 38,000 people, mostly from the Chicago area.

The overall slowdown was due to uptick in deaths, a slowdown in births and a fractional drop in immigration, all of which damped American population growth for the year ended July 1. The 0.7% increase, to 323.1 million, was the smallest on record since 1936-37, according to William Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution.