Review Category : Poltics

Romneys and Clintons to Attend NYC Lunch After Mitt’s Attack on Hillary

/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — The Romneys and the Clintons could meet sooner than in 2016. Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston confirms to ABC News that the two couples are expected to attend a New York City lunch together Friday to benefit the Ann Romney Center for Neurological Disorders.

Chelsea Clinton’s husband Marc Mezvinsky is on the board of the center.

The lunch was first reported by The New York Times.

The Times points out the lunch will now be quite awkward after Romney went on the attack against Clinton Wednesday night in his speech to Mississippi State University.

In his speech, he said, “Secretary of State Hillary Clinton cluelessly pressed a reset button for Russia, which smiled and then invaded Ukraine, a sovereign nation,” Romney said. He also went after Clinton on the economy and he joked about his own wealth by also jabbing Clinton: “I’m not even thinking about the speaking fees I can earn,” Romney said. “As you no doubt heard, I’m already rich.”

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Rand Paul Is Turning Out to Be the 2016 Troller-in-Chief

US Senate(WASHINGTON) — Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., may be mulling a bid to be the next commander-in-chief in 2016, but he may have already earned the unofficial title of troller-in-chief with his pointed digs at his potential rivals — Democrats and Republicans alike.

The latest came Wednesday evening, when Paul used “#ThingsToRunFrom” to describe former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

The same old candidates running for President #ThingsToRunFrom pic.twitter.com/MIljwji097

— Senator Rand Paul (@SenRandPaul) January 28, 2015

The first Republican-on-Republican trolling came in December, when Paul called out Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., for opposing the normalization of relations between the U.S. and Cuba.

Hey @marcorubio if the embargo doesn’t hurt Cuba, why do you want to keep it?

— Senator Rand Paul (@SenRandPaul) December 19, 2014

Senator @marcorubio is acting like an isolationist who wants to retreat to our borders and perhaps build a moat. I reject this isolationism.

— Senator Rand Paul (@SenRandPaul) December 19, 2014

The United States trades and engages with other communist nations, such as China and Vietnam. So @marcorubio why not Cuba?

— Senator Rand Paul (@SenRandPaul) December 19, 2014

He trolled Bush and Romney after their meeting in Utah earlier this month.

Jeb Bush apparently gave Mitt Romney a “third time’s a charm” bracelet at their meeting in Utah today: pic.twitter.com/uaOsZfMJEq

— Senator Rand Paul (@SenRandPaul) January 22, 2015

Mitt Romney’s friendship band to Jeb Bush at today’s meeting in Utah: pic.twitter.com/eprVgg2YUx

— Senator Rand Paul (@SenRandPaul) January 22, 2015

He’s aired his grievance on Festivus…

I’ve got a lot of problems with you people (mostly in DC), and today you’re going to hear about it! Stayed tuned for #Festivus grievances

— Senator Rand Paul (@SenRandPaul) December 23, 2014

…and critiqued his fellow Republicans’ fashion choices.

We all know having a fashion forward campaign is important to success, as @RickSantorum showed us in 2012 #Festivus pic.twitter.com/qAeGIp2wpo

— Senator Rand Paul (@SenRandPaul) December 23, 2014

No matter how many times I ask @Team_Mitch, he won’t let me borrow this awesome sweater vest pic.twitter.com/VACHu6RdVY

— Senator Rand Paul (@SenRandPaul) December 23, 2014

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McCain Calls Out Protesters Who Swarmed Henry Kissinger

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Sen. John McCain earned some applause inside the Senate Armed Services hearing Thursday morning, after he erupted at protesters of former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, calling them “low-life scum.”

“I’ve been a member of this committee for many years, and I have never seen anything as disgraceful and outrageous and despicable as the last demonstration that just took place,” said McCain, R-Ariz.

Protesters from the group CodePink swarmed behind Kissinger as he arrived alongside two other former secretaries of State — Madeleine Albright and George Shultz — for a hearing on U.S. national security strategy.

They held up signs calling Kissinger a criminal and chanted “arrest Henry Kissinger for war crimes,” citing some of his more controversial decisions during the Nixon and Ford administrations.

“You know, you’re going to have to shut up, or I’m going to have you arrested,” McCain said as Capitol Hill Police tried to remove the protesters. “Get out of here you low-life scum.”

Kissinger didn’t acknowledge the protesters, who again interrupted him later in the hearing prior to his opening statement.

“Dr. Kissinger, I hope on behalf of all of the members of this committee on both sides of the aisle — in fact, from all of my colleagues, I’d like to apologize for allowing such disgraceful behavior towards a man who served his country with the greatest distinction,” McCain said. “I apologize profusely.”

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What Obama’s Bro Hugs, Parade Visits in India Mean for the US

Pankaj Nangia/India Today Group/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — During his landmark visit to India this week, President Obama and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi swapped hugs, sat side-by-side at India’s Republic Day Parade, and declared an era of “new trust” between the two nations.

But for all the colorful festivities and declarations of good will, what did the visit actually accomplish?

ABC News/Yahoo! News posed the question to the highest ranking U.S. diplomat to India, Ambassador Richard Verma, who explained why he believes the visit had “historic” implications.

“We talk about transformational moments, and transformational visits, I think this was one of them,” Verma said.

Obama’s visit to India — his second as president — came just four months after he welcomed Modi to the White House as India’s new prime minister.

“He was the first president to be here for India’s Republic Day; he was the first sitting president to visit India twice; and although these are symbolic gestures, they’re really indicative of where I think he wants to see the relationship go,” Verma said. “It’s very rare for two heads of state to come together, shake hands, [and] outline a very ambitious agenda.”

Verma pointed to the expansive scope of issues on which the two leaders declared cooperation as one measure of the trip’s success.

“If you look at the range of issues that the president and the prime minister talked about, I don’t think there’s hardly a subject that wasn’t covered,” Verma said. “From education to health to climate to energy, defense, nuclear energy, nuclear power, intelligence cooperation, homeland security, people-to-people contact, culture, intellectual property — they ran the gamut on subjects.”

In real terms, the visit produced specific agreements on a civil nuclear development program for India and also marked the renewal of a decade-long defense partnership deal, among other measures.

And though Verma said he would argue that India and the U.S. have had a good relationship for many years, he acknowledged certain tensions in the past.

“We can’t ignore history,” Verma said. “India had a proud and still has a proud history of being an independent country. …I would say we’ve been close, we’ve gotten closer over the last decade, and now I think, we have got a really great opportunity to take it even further.”

The display of a new U.S.-Indian friendship also had the effect of exposing fissures in the U.S. and India’s relationship with one of India’s neighbors: China.

“Our relationship with China, like India, has elements of cooperation and elements of competition,” Verma said. “To the extent that India and the United States can help promote democracy, can help promote a rules based border and defend the kind of peaceful resolution of these disputes in Asia, across the Indo-Pacific and into East Asia, that’s important.”

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Civilian Army Contractor Charged in Bribery Case

VladimirCetinski/iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — A U.S. Army civilian contractor was charged on Wednesday with soliciting bribes from executives bidding on a contract that he managed out of the Pentagon.

James Glenn Warner, 44, allegedly made arrangements to meet with two executives of a Virginia-based company which held a five-year contract with the U.S. Army worth up to $120 million. During the meeting, the FBI claims that Warner had the two executives from the company communicate by typing into his cell phone, then later passed a menu to the executives containing a piece of paper with outlines soliciting a bribe and extortion.

Specifically, Warner allegedly suggested that if the company paid $500,000 it would secure a contract renewal with the Army, even suggesting that damaging information about the company would be destroyed.

The FBI says that the executives declined the offer, reported the conduct and cooperated with law enforcement agents. At the direction of law enforcement, a company executive met with Warner four subsequent times, paying him a total of $50,000 cash bribes.

If convicted, Warner faces up to 15 years in prison and a maximum fine of $1.5 million.

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Democrats Propose Legislation to Consolidate Food Safety into Single Agency

Credit: Architect of the Capitol(WASHINGTON) — A pair of Democrats in Congress proposed legislation on Wednesday that would consolidate 15 different agencies currently in charge of food safety oversight into one independent food safety agency.

“The fragmented nature of our food safety system has left us more vulnerable to the risk of foodborne illness,” Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said in a statement. The proposed legislation “would transfer and consolidate food safety authorities for inspections, enforcement, labeling and research into a single food safety agency.” The two Democrats also note that a single food safety agency could “allow us to prioritize system-wide food safety goals and targets.”

Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., added that the fact that the food safety system is “hopelessly fragmented and outdated” means that “lives are unnecessarily put at risk.”

Co-sponsors for the bill include Sens. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., and Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.

The proposal would additionally provide authority to require the recall of unsafe food, require risk assessments and preventive control plans to minimize adulteration of food products, strengthen contaminant performance standards, improve the inspection of foreign food and require full traceability to identify the sources of outbreaks.

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White House Declines Comment on Michelle Obama’s Decision Not to Wear Headscarf in Saudi Arabia

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — The White House on Wednesday declined to say whether first lady Michelle Obama’s decision not to wear a headscarf while in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday was intended to be a political statement.

Deputy White House Press Secretary Eric Schultz told reporters that “the attire the first lady wore on this trip was consistent with what first ladies in the past have worn,” naming Laura Bush and Hillary Clinton, as well as German Chancellor Angela Merkel, as examples.

Schultz responded to a question regarding a tweet from Sen. Ted Cruz which congratulated the first lady for “standing up for women,” saying only that Michelle Obama “felt like she was warmly welcomed by the King” and “very much enjoyed her visit to both India and Saudi Arabia.”

Kudos to @FLOTUS for standing up for women & refusing to wear Sharia-mandated head-scarf in Saudi Arabia. Nicely done http://t.co/TlSw4Qc9KQ

— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) January 28, 2015

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Air Force Says Boeing 747-8 Will Be Next Air Force One

Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — The Air Force has selected the Boeing 747-8 as the next Air Force One.

Presidents have been flying aboard Boeing 747s since 1989, and the trend will continue with the latest selection. “The presidential aircraft is one of the most visible symbols of the United States of America and the office of the president of the United States,” Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James said in a statement. She noted that the Boeing 747-8 “is the only aircraft manufactured in the United States [that], when fully missionized meets the necessary capabilities established to execute the presidential support mission, while reflecting the office of the president of the United States of America consistent with the national public interest.”

Previously completed analyses determined that the only two aircraft that met the needs of Air Force One’s mission — four-engine, wide-bodied aircraft — were the 747-8 and the A380 manufactured by Airbus in France.

“The current fleet of VC-25 presidential aircraft has performed exceptionally well,” James said. “Yet, it is time to upgrade.” She cited obsolete parts, diminishing sources for manufacturing and increased maintenance need as reasons to field a new aircraft.

The decision, Col. Amy McCain, the Presidential Aircraft Recapitalization program manager, said, “is not a contract award to procure 747-8 aircraft,” noting that both the “overall acquisition strategy” and “risk-reduction activities” must be completed to define the planes’ capabilities and cost.

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Makers of Drone that Crashed at White House to Enforce No-Fly Zone in DC

U.S. Secret Service(NEW YORK) — DJI, the maker of the drone that crashed on the White House lawn earlier this week, announced on Wednesday that it will enforce a no-fly zone on downtown Washington, D.C for its products.

Once the drones are updated in the next few days, they will not be able to take off from or fly into the nation’s capital or a 15-mile radius around it, according to a news release from the company. GPS technology in the drones will be able to identify the no-fly zone, warn the operator and then stop at the no-fly zone’s border.

According to DJI spokesperson Michael Perry, if a drone enters the no-fly zone, the craft’s GPS receiver gets pinged by a satellite and it will automatically land. To maneuver the drone out of the restricted area, the pilot can move it forwards and backwards and side-to-side, but not have it gain any altitude.

DJI’s update is to comply with the Federal Aviation Administration’s restriction of unmanned flight around the D.C. area.

“With the unmanned aerial systems community growing on a daily basis, we feel it is important to provide pilots additional tools to help them fly safely and responsibly,” Perry said in a statement. “We will continue cooperating with regulators and lawmakers to ensure the skies stay safe and open for innovation.”

DJI is an international company based in Shenzhen, China — the city considered the Silicon Valley of China — that specializes in making “easy-to-fly” camera drones.

The drone that landed on the grounds of the White House was not considered a threat, and President Obama was away from Washington at the time of the incident, but the situation once again raised questions about presidential security.

In a move that might land him on FAA’s “naughty list,” a government employee was drinking when he lost control of the drone.

The Secret Service is still conducting further investigation into the White House security scare.

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‘Ready for Hillary’ Thanks Sarah Palin for Fundraising Boost

Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Remember last weekend when former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin stood up in Iowa before a group of Republicans and waved the “Ready for Hillary” flag? Well, turns out she inadvertently did the group a huge favor.

On Monday the pro-Clinton super PAC, Ready for Hillary, sent out an e-mail message to their supporters about Palin’s Iowa moment. And in response, they’ve since raised roughly $25,000 in donations, according to the group.

“Here’s the kicker — by raising $25,000, Sarah officially qualifies as a Co-Chair of our National Finance Council,” the message from the group’s Executive Director Adam Parkhomenko says. “We will wait until Sarah calls before officially adding her name to the list.”

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