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  • Which projects? Congress worries as Trump grabs military construction funds for border wall

    As President Donald Trump on Friday announced a pair of executive actions and declared a national emergency to funnel more money into border security, lawmakers in both parties in Congress were left in the dark on how the Pentagon would deal with the largest part of the President’s declaration, carving $3.6 billion out of military construction projects authorized and funded by the U.S. House and Senate.

    “I strongly believe securing our border should not be done at the expense of previously funded military construction projects,” said Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH), whose district is home to Wright Patterson Air Force Base, [More]

  • White House: Trump using national emergency and executive actions for border wall

    President Donald Trump will use a combination of executive actions and one national emergency declaration to go around Congress and funnel over $6 billion in funds not directly approved by lawmakers for security efforts along the border with Mexico, planning to tap money from both the Treasury Department and the Pentagon, with a goal of building a minimum of 234 new miles of border barriers, White House officials said on Friday.

    “I didn’t need to do this,” President Trump told reporters in the Rose Garden, complaining that Congress wasn’t giving him enough money for a wall. “I just want to [More]

  • Congress passes border deal as Trump readies emergency for border wall

    The House and Senate moved swiftly on Thursday to approve a package of unfinished spending bills for 2019, as President Donald Trump signaled that he would sign the measures into law in order to avoid a second partial government shutdown on Friday night, but the White House said the President would go a step further and declare a national emergency to funnel more money into his campaign pledge for a border wall.

    “President Trump will sign the government funding bill, and as he has stated before, he will also take other executive action – including a national emergency – to ensure [More]

  • President Trump to sign funding bill, declare national emergency on border

    After leaving lawmakers in both parties in suspense about a House-Senate deal on border security funding, the White House said Thursday afternoon that President Donald Trump had agreed to sign a group of spending bills into law to avoid a second partial government shutdown, but that the President would then immediately declare a ‘national emergency’ in order to funnel money from other projects into additional border security measures, a move which was immediately denounced by Democrats, and is certain to draw legal challenges.

    “I’ve just had an opportunity to speak with President Trump,” said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who assured [More]

  • Senate confirms William Barr as new U.S. Attorney General

    After a debate clouded by how the Justice Department will handle the results of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, the Senate voted mainly along party lines Thursday to confirm William Barr for the post of Attorney General, as Barr returns to the Justice Department almost 28 years after holding the same position. The Senate vote was 54-45.

    “The President made an outstanding choice with Mr. Barr,” said Sen. John Thune (R-SD). “He was unanimously confirmed as Attorney General under George H.W. Bush in a Democrat-controlled Senate.”

    “We know that he can faithfully execute the duties of the office [More]

  • Five tidbits from the border security funding deal in Congress

    Facing a Friday night deadline to avoid a second partial government shutdown, lawmakers in Congress and officials at the White House were busily digesting the details of a sweeping legislative funding package unveiled just after midnight, as House and Senate leaders prepared for swift action on the plan to finish budget work for Fiscal Year 2019.

    While the headlines are all about the specifics of the agreement on how money in this deal can be spent on border security – and rightly so – Congress is actually voting on seven government funding bills all rolled into one giant legislative package.

    Before we [More]

  • House panel approves background checks for all private gun sales

    Setting up a vote in the full House later this month, the House Judiciary Committee voted along party lines Wednesday evening to approve a bill to extend background checks on gun sales to all private gun transactions, along with a separate measure to give law enforcement more time to deal with background check investigations, as Democrats moved forward on one of their prime agenda items now that their party controls the U.S. House.

    “This is common sense legislation to protect the public,” said Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) said of the bill to extend the requirement for background checks to all gun [More]

  • Judge: Manafort lied even after agreeing to cooperate with Russia probe

    A federal judge in Washington ruled on Wednesday that former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort – while he was cooperating with an investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and any ties to the Trump campaign – intentionally made false statements to the FBI, Special Counsel, and a federal grand jury, as Judge Amy Berman Jackson ruled that prosecutors were no longer bound by their plea bargain agreement with Manafort, opening the door to a longer term in prison.

    In her ruling, Judge Jackson found that of five allegations raised by Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office, [More]

  • Bringing up Iran-Contra guilty plea, Rep. Omar clashes with Trump official

    At almost the same moment that Vice President Mike Pence was calling for Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) to be removed from the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Omar tangled Wednesday with the Trump Administration’s special envoy on Venezuela, bringing up a guilty plea made by Elliot Abrams in 1991 for misleading the Congress about details of the Iran-Contra affair.

    “I fail to understand why members of this committee or the American people should find any testimony that you give today to be truthful,” Omar said to a somewhat stunned Abrams, who was testifying at a House hearing on the situation in Venezuela.

    When [More]

  • Trump hints at ‘national emergency’ to funnel money to border wall

    Even as President Donald Trump publicly grumbled on Tuesday about the details of a border funding agreement worked out by House-Senate negotiators, some of his supporters in Congress were convinced that the President would sign that bill into law, and then swiftly move to use executive powers to funnel other money into construction of a border wall, all but assuring a legal fight over such a unilateral move.

    “I’ve heard a variety of different numbers,” said Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), a key House ally of President Trump, as the head of the House Freedom Caucus said he expected the President to [More]

News

  • Union County sheriff’s detectives were staking out an area Thursday near Wesley Chapel, North Carolina, when they saw two males leave a red vehicle. >> Read more trending news The suspicious people put on ski masks and hoodies and kicked in the front door of a residence. Detectives 'noticed they started putting on ski masks covering their faces putting hoodies on their heads, then they made their way toward the house and kicked the front door in,' said Tony Underwood with the Union County Sheriff’s Office. Patrol officers were called in and after a short time, the intruders left the house carrying a bag and got back into a vehicle where a driver was waiting. Authorities stopped the vehicle near Goldmine Road and Corporate Center Road. 'I heard sirens, and I saw a lot of Sheriff's Office deputies driving really fast down the street,' neighbor Shannon Skiscin said. Two of the suspects were taken into custody and the third fled on foot but was apprehended a short time later. Inside the vehicle, authorities found a 9 mm handgun, Taser, cellphones, ski masks and about 1,100 Xanax bars. The three suspects were Gabriel Alexander Oyuch, 20, of Matthews, Jaydan Burwell, 20, of Charlotte, and Michael Lamonte Byrd, 24, of Charlotte.  'I've never (sic) known nothing to happen,” neighbor Tammy Heath said. “I've fallen asleep with my door unlocked.' Detectives then executed a search warrant for the home and found marijuana, about 200 Xanax bars, Roxicodone and more than $2,400 in cash. The two people arrested in the home were Michael Joseph Tabbit, 18, of Wesley Chapel, and Jonathan Troy Sierski, 20, who lives at the house. Oyuch was charged with robbery with a dangerous weapon, conspiracy to commit a felony, felonious breaking and entering and possession with intent to sell and deliver a Schedule IV controlled substance.  Burwell was charged with robbery with a dangerous weapon, conspiracy to commit a felony, felonious breaking and entering, felony larceny and possession with intent to sell and deliver a Schedule IV controlled substance.  Byrd was charged with robbery with a dangerous weapon, conspiracy to commit a felony, felonious breaking and entering, felony larceny and possession with intent to sell and deliver a Schedule IV controlled substance.  Tabbit and Swierski also face numerous drug charges. “Outstanding police work,” Union County Sheriff Eddie Cathey said. “Deputies were in the right place at the right time to apprehend armed criminals who boldly entered an occupied residence in the middle of the afternoon. A situation like that could have ended much differently.”  The home invasion was not a random crime, authorities said.
  • Police are searching for a man accused of stealing a car from a Midtown high-rise condominium parking garage last week. The car was stolen from the Spire condos at 860 Peachtree Street on Feb. 5, Atlanta police said in a Friday news release.  The man slipped through the side of the parking gate and began pulling on car door handles and entering vehicles, the release said. The car that was stolen was a 2009 Honda Accord, which the victim said had been left unlocked with the key inside, the release said. A 9mm Glock handgun was also inside the vehicle when it was stolen. Anyone with information on the this incident is asked to contact CrimeStoppers at 404-577-8477 or online at www.StopCrimeATL.com. Tips can be sent anonymously and information that leads to an arrest and indictment in this investigation can earn tipsters up to $2,000. In other news:
  • One man was arrested after police in Florida said he allowed an underage girl to take the wheel during a trip to the store, according to the Brevard County Sheriff's Office. >> Read more trending news Officials said a vehicle was observed be driven into the opposite lane and into dirt off the side of the roadway Thursday in the area of North Tropical Trail at about 6:15 p.m. Police came in contact with the vehicle, where 62-year-old Mark Papczynski said he allowed the girl to drive to the store 'to get her a snack and himself another 18 pack of beer,' according to an arrest report. Papczynski admitted that letting the girl drive was dangerous. In a post-jail interview Papczynski said, 'I was brought up in the old school, where parents always taught their children the ways of life,' in regards to the incident. He also said that 'it wasn't like she was doing it for the first time.' He faces two charges of child neglect without great bodily harm and permitting an unauthorized person to drive, according to jail records.
  • It was a busy day for Atlanta rapper 21 Savage Friday, starting with a pretaped appearance on “Good Morning America,” followed by being booked into a South Georgia jail on a felony theft by deception warrant. He was later released, according to the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office. >> Read more trending news The Friday legal matter is connected to a concert booking from 2016 for which a promoter paid the musician, whose real name is She’yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, $17,000, TMZ reported. The rapper kept the money but did not perform, so the promoter filed paperwork to get a warrant issued for his arrest, according to TMZ’s report. “The warrant is from some years ago, and he went through the process and addressed the issue,” Liberty County Sheriff Steve Sikes told the Coastal Courier newspaper in Hinesville.
  • A Florida man said he was going through his morning routine when he walked out of his apartment bathroom and realized his Nest security camera was on. >> Read more trending news Adam King said he then heard a voice he did not recognize. 'The light came on and caught my attention, and I believe he said, 'No one wants to see that,'' King said. 'He had an accent, proceeded to do some shuffling of the microphone. When I left the bedroom, some music or audio of some (sort) came on.' King said someone was using a computer or cellphone to watch him through the Nest app. He said he walked into his living room to search for his cellphone or his iPad so he could turn off the camera, but he was unable to, because the other person had control of the app. 'I had no choice but to come right back inside and unplug the camera,' King said. Nest, which is owned by Google, provided WFTV with the following statement: 'Nest Security has not been breached or compromised. Customers may be vulnerable because their email addresses and passwords are freely available on the internet. If a website is compromised, it's possible for someone to gain access to user email addresses and passwords, and from there, gain access to any accounts that use the same login credentials.' Jason Cook, a Florida Department of Law Enforcement cybercrimes supervisor, said it is important to use a secured network. 'It's your thermostat. It's your home surveillance system, your washer and dryer, Wi-Fi, controlled outlet sometimes,' he said. 'They're all running through your network, and if your network isn't secured, all of that stuff is vulnerable.' Nest said that it encourages users to utilize its two-layer authentication process. King said he is unwilling to put his privacy at risk again. 'I don't want to put my camera back up on the wall in fear it could be hacked again,' he said. The company spokesman would not estimate how many customers have experienced similar issues.
  • Special counsel Robert Mueller’s office recommends that President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort serve a sentence of 19.5 to 24.5 years in prison after being convicted of eight financial crimes in Virginia. >> Read more trending news The sentencing memorandum also recommended a fine of up to $24 million. Though Mueller’s office did not recommend a precise sentence for Manafort, prosecutors said they agreed with a calculation by federal probation officials that his crimes deserve a punishment of between 19 and 24 years. They also lay out in great detail for U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III how they say Manafort’s greed drove him to disregard American law. “In the end, Manafort acted for more than a decade as if he were above the law, and deprived the federal government and various financial institutions of millions of dollars,” the prosecutors wrote. “The sentence here should reflect the seriousness of these crimes, and serve to both deter Manafort and others from engaging in such conduct.” Earlier this week, a federal judge ruled Manafort not only lied to Mueller’s team, he made false statements after agreeing to cooperate with the Special Counsel’s Office, according to court documents. >> MORE: Judge rules Paul Manafort intentionally lied after agreeing to cooperate The judge also found that Manafort lied in statements to investigators and the grand jury about finances related to a pro-Trump super PAC, that he lied about his communications with alleged Russian intelligence agent Konstantin Kilimnik and that he lied about information in another Justice Department investigation, among other false statements. Manafort’s attorneys have denied any wrongdoing. Officials said he’s turned over access to his electronic devices and email accounts as part of his cooperation. >> MORE: Paul Manafort appears in court after allegedly lying to investigators Last month, defense attorneys said Manafort has been kept in solitary confinement for his own safety. He’s had severe gout for several months of his incarceration, according to his attorneys, and it’s sometimes been severe enough to require that he use a wheelchair. The Associated Press contributed to this report.