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GOP may hold START Treaty hostage over immigration reform, ‘don’t ask’ repeal

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As the repeal of the military’s gay ban and a crucial vote on immigration reform edge closer, Republicans are finding more and more ways to derail the effort and run out the clock on the Democrats’ lame duck session.

Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN), speaking from the Senate floor Friday, said many of his Republican colleagues may vote against the New START nuclear treaty with Russia if Democrats move forward with a plan to vote on “don’t ask, don’t tell” repeal Saturday. He suggested that Democrats were ineffectual in asking for Republican bipartisanship on START while also moving to force a vote on immigration reform and ‘don’t ask.’

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“I have to tell you what this has done,” Corker said. “I’ve been in three meetings this morning. What’s happening is it poisons the well on this debate on something that’s very, very important. I don’t want to see that happen. I’m not someone who comes down here and says fiery things to terrorize and divide. But I’m hoping that saner minds will prevail. I’m hoping that those will be taken down or I don’t think the future of the START treaty over the next several days is going to be successful based on what I’m watching.”

“These issues that have been brought forth are absolutely partisan political issues, brought forth to basically accommodate activist groups around this country,” he continued. “I’m hoping that those will be taken down or I don’t think the future of the START treaty over the next several days is going to be successful… I’m hoping that’s going to change.”

The Washington Post‘s Greg Sargent noted that he has heard rumors for days that Republicans would use the repeal of the military’s discrimination policy as an excuse not to pass START.

“This isn’t really a threat on Corker’s part,” Sargent wrote. “Rather, he’s saying — in a more-in-sorrow-than-in-anger way — that his GOP colleagues will be less likely to support START unless Reid drops his plan for DADT and DREAM votes right away.”

President Obama has insisted that passage of the New START treaty is a national security imperative, and that every day it takes to ratify the US lacks verification of the Russian nuclear arsenal.

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This video is from C-SPAN 2, broadcast Dec. 17, 2010.


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2020 Election

Is corporate media creating a misleading impression of voter sentiment? 91 percent of Nevada Dem voters said ‘no’

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We caution readers to be very careful in interpreting the Democratic primary election results so far for reasons cited below. We think the way our major news organizations are reporting the primary results can easily create a misleading impression of voter sentiment.

The analysis below should give you pause whether you think Sanders is, and should be, a shoo-in to beat Trump or you fear that a Sanders nomination will ensure a second Trump term and a romp by Republican Congressional candidates.

We ask ardent supporters and foes of Sanders, or any other candidate, to avoid a hot or presumptive reaction to what follows, a concern based on many responses to some of my caucus night tweets and Facebook posts in recent weeks.

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The ancient Greeks had alternative facts too – they were just more chill about it

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In an age of deepfakes and alternative facts, it can be tricky getting at the truth. But persuading others – or even yourself – what is true is not a challenge unique to the modern era. Even the ancient Greeks had to confront different realities.

Take the story of Oedipus. It is a narrative that most people think they know – Oedipus blinded himself after finding out he killed his father and married his mother, right?

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2020 Election

Donald Trump Jr rants ‘stupid’ CNN has done more damage to elections than the Russians

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President Donald Trump's eldest son complained that CNN was attempting to undermine democracy by reporting on Russian election interference.

The network, like other U.S. media outlets, has reported on efforts by the Kremlin to influence the 2020 election, just as U.S. intelligence agencies and law enforcement agree Russia did during the 2016 election.

Donald Trump Jr. -- who infamously accepted an invitation during his father's first campaign to hear dirt on Hillary Clinton from a Russian lawyer -- accused CNN of manipulating the election by reporting those Russian efforts.

"CNN is so stupid they don’t even understand the irony of how they’ve done more damage than any 'Russian operation' could ever have dreamed," Trump Jr tweeted, in response to a conservative blogger. "The media has done one hell of a job these past 4 years in attempting to deligitmize [sic] our election process."

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