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Obama to give George Bush, Sr. the presidential Medal of Freedom

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Former President George H.W. Bush is among 15 people selected to be awarded the presidential Medal of Freedom, the White House announced Wednesday night.

The Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honor, is awarded for “an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.”

A White House announcement specifically lauded Bush’s work with former President Bill Clinton on charitable initiatives.

The move was widely expected to be seen as a bipartisan gesture from Obama to Republicans on Capitol Hill, fresh off a round of mid-term elections that ended Democrats’ House majority but left them in control of the US Senate.

The announcement was made a day after former President George W. Bush respectfully declined to criticize President Obama, during a press conference in Dallas at the future site of the Bush library.

Others named by the Obama administration include German Chancellor Angela Merkel, billionaire philanthropist Warren Buffett, civil rights leader and Congressman John Lewis, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, poet and author Maya Angelou, holocaust survivor Gerda Weissmann Klein, former AFL-CIO leader John Sweeney and more.

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“These outstanding honorees come from a broad range of backgrounds and they’ve excelled in a broad range of fields, but all of them have lived extraordinary lives that have inspired us, enriched our culture, and made our country and our world a better place,” Obama said in a published statement.

Former President Bush, a World War II veteran, also served as vice president to President Ronald Reagan and as director of the CIA.

Last year’s Medal of Freedom recipients included deceased Sen. Edward Kennedy, former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, deceased Republican Rep. Jack Kemp, deceased gay rights activist Harvey Milk and 12 others.

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CNN

‘It’s voter discouragement’: Jake Tapper says Trump efforts to curb Dem votes doesn’t count as ‘suppression’

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CNN host Jake Tapper on Sunday disagreed with the notion that President Donald Trump and Russians tried to "suppress" Democratic votes by engaging in what he called large-scale voter "discouragement."

During a panel discussion on CNN, Democratic analyst Jennifer Granholm slammed Trump's campaign for "voter suppression."

"The thing that concerns me about the launch, Jake, of this new — of his re-election [campaign], he has already raised $100 million," Granholm said of Trump. "His campaign manager, Brad Parscale, who ran the digital campaign last time around, said that this time this campaign is going to be bigger, better and badder."

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2020 Election

Can at least half the 2020 Democrats please quit right now?

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OK, Democrats — you’ve had your fun. You grew up being told that everybody could run for president, and then everybody did. Except that this mad anthill scramble of presidential candidates, which resembles a bunch of kindergarteners descending on not enough cookies, really hasn’t been fun so far. All you’ve managed to do is put the fear of God — or the fear of the other guy, more like — into the voters, provoking widespread PTSD flashbacks to November 2016.

This article first appeared in Salon.

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CNN

Conservative columnist Max Boot: ‘It’s reality that’s pushing for impeachment’

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Max Boot, a conservative columnist for The Washington Post, argued on Sunday that "reality" is "pushing for impeachment."

On CNN's Reliable Sources program, host Brian Stelter asked if it is the media's fault that the possible impeachment of President Donald Trump has become a topic of discussion.

"Journalist are doing their jobs and reporting the facts," national security analyst Samantha Vinograd insisted. "I don’t think that putting the press in one basket is helpful. Trump does that, but we shouldn’t do that."

Boot said that attacking the media over impeachment amounts to "blaming the messenger."

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