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Palestinians warn two-state solution ‘impossible with Netanyahu’

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A two-state solution to the Middle East conflict will be impossible with an Israeli government headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas said on Thursday.

“Netanyahu’s statements against a two-state solution and against a Palestinian state… are proof, if correct, that there is no seriousness in the (future) Israeli government about a political solution that will lead to the establishment of two states,” he said a day after the Israeli leader snatched an upset election victory.

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In a last-ditch appeal to Israel’s far right just hours before polls opened on Tuesday, Netanyahu ruled out the establishment of a Palestinian state and pledged to build thousands of new homes for Jewish settlers in annexed Arab east Jerusalem.

Abbas said the Palestinians would continue to “demand international legitimacy,” in reference to their attempts to achieve statehood through the United Nations and other international bodies.

“It is our right to go to anywhere in the world to achieve international legitimacy,” he said.

The Palestinian leader also pointed to the likely inclusion in the new Israeli government of Avigdor Lieberman, head of the ultranationalist Yisrael Beitenu party, who waged a virulent election campaign against both the Palestinians and Israel’s Arab minority.

Abbas said Lieberman had made “racist calls to kill Arab Israelis”, a reference to reported comments earlier this month in which he said any Arabs who were disloyal to the Jewish state should be beheaded.

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Maddow destroys ‘bad faith’ complaints about impeachment from Republican Trump supporters

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The host of "The Rachel Maddow Show" on Friday blasted "bad faith" arguments from Republicans about the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.

Maddow recounted the process complaints by Republicans -- each of which has disappeared.

"After going through all of that, they now have unveiled a new objection as to why President Trump cannot actually be subject to this impeachment proceeding, a new noble stand they're taking for fairness and the American way -- they have rolled it out with our friends at the Fox News channel," Maddow said.

She played a clip of former GOP Speaker Newt Gingrich on Fox News.

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Everyone is baffled by Trump’s rambling rant about flushing toilets ’10 times, 15 times’

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Another day, another truly baffling series of words coming from President Donald Trump’s mouth.

Speaking at a White House meeting on Friday about small business and regulation, Trump went on one of his trademark riffs, touching on a number of subjects with the clarity of a muddy puddle. He seemed to be referring to a series of complaints that have been raised over the years about various consumer product regulations (a favorite topic of Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky) but without making a coherent point about any of them.

Read the whole stream of consciousness rant to get a sense of what it was like:

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Adam Schiff pushes Pence to declassify aide’s secret information — implying it might be embarrassing or illegal

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House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) sent a letter on Friday to Vice President Mike Pence urging him to declassify the entirety of his Sept. 18 call with President Volodymyr Zelensky for use in the impeachment inquiry.

Though the vice president’s office, along with the rest of the administration, has stonewalled the impeachment inquiry’s requests for documents, Schiff’s committee obtained information about the Sept. 18 call through Jennifer Williams, a Pence aide who has already testified. Initially, Schiff explained, Williams testified about Pence’s call and did not assert that any part of it was classified. When she testified publicly, however, she said Pence’s office had since determined that the call was classified. She later sent the committee a “supplemental submission” after reviewing “materials” that refreshed her memory about the call — and it’s that supplemental submission that Schiff would like to see declassified.

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