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#BlackLivesMatter co-founder warns presidential candidates: ‘We will shut down every single debate’

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Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors criticized both Sen. Bernie Sanders and ex-Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley after Saturday’s protest at the Netroots Nation progressive conference.

“He couldn’t take 15 more minutes of the heat,” Cullors said of Sanders in an interview on This Week in Blackness, making reference to the senator ending his appearance as demonstrators at the event walked out en masse.

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Journalist and activist Jose Antonio Vargas, who interviewed both Democratic candidates during the forum, later told The Raw Story that he was directed to wrap up his discussion with Sanders 15 minutes ahead of schedule.

Cullors told This Week host L. Joy Williams that she felt neither O’Malley nor Sanders were “humble enough” during their town hall appearance, and called on presidential candidates to be willing to openly discuss issues of race and gender.

“No more skirting around the issues,” Cullor said. “We will shut down every single debate.”

The protest began during O’Malley’s interview with Vargas, with demonstrators jeering when O’Malley used the phrases “every life matters” and “white lives matter” while responding to a question calling on him to demonstrate an “action plan” for how he would address police violence if elected.

The response interrupted the former governor after he said he would push for police to be required to report every officer-involved shooting. Later, he told Raw Story that he would also ramp up use of body cameras by officers, and would also ensure that departments be more inclusive of communities of color in their recruiting processes.

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“I think these are all things that our federal government can help us lead and also encourage,” he said following a meeting with immigration activists later in the day. “Perhaps even providing a framework for police departments to cross-designate prosecutors from other jurisdictions when a judgment call needs to be made on a police-involved shooting.”

The protest continued during Sanders’ appearance, with one woman standing on a chair and using the #IfIDieInPoliceCustody tag, which has spread in the wake of the deaths of Kindra Chapman and Sandra Bland.

“If I die in police custody, I want Bernie Sanders to say my name,” she said, as seen in the picture below:

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Cullors and other protesters also called on the senator to “deal with anti-blackness” instead of focusing his speech on economic measures.

“Black lives of course matter,” Sanders said at one point. “But I have spent 50 yrs of my life fighting for civil rights and if you don’t want me to be here, that’s OK.”

But following the event, Cullors said Sanders and other presidential hopefuls need to make black communities feel like they are not being “sold something.”

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“If you want our vote, you are going to have to do way more work,” she said.


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‘I haven’t had a personal cell phone for years’: Trump demands retraction from CNN

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donald trump on the phone

On Thursday, The Washington Post reported that President Donald Trump had spoken to Rudy Giuliani over unsecured phone lines.

If he was using an unsecured phone to talk to Giuliani about Ukraine, Trump would effectively be allowing the Russians to listen in.

CNN confirmed the unsecured phone use, reporting "President Donald Trump has continued to use his personal cell phone to make calls, despite repeated warnings from his staff that the practice could leave him vulnerable to foreign surveillance, multiple officials told CNN."

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Trump tweets he will ‘temporarily hold off’ plan to have the US military cross the border into Mexico

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President Donald Trump has called off floated plans to use U.S. military for cross-border incursions into Mexico.

In November, Trump floated the idea, which was blasted as "deranged."

But in a Friday evening news announcement, Trump tweeted he would "temporarily suspend" the plan.

"All necessary work has been completed to declare Mexican Cartels terrorist organizations," Trump tweeted. "Statutorily we are ready to do so. However, at the request of a man who I like and respect, and has worked so well with us, President Andres Manuel we will temporarily hold off this designation and step up our joint efforts to deal decisively with these vicious and ever-growing organizations!"

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Ocasio-Cortez takes victory lap after Amazon goes to NYC — even after she helped block $3 billion in subsidies

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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) was one of the progressive leaders in New York City credited with blocking $3 billion in public subsidies for Amazon to open an additional headquarters.

But Amazon is moving into NYC despite the lack of subsidies.

"The giant online retailer said it has signed a new lease for 335,000 square feet on the city’s west side in the new Hudson Yards neighborhood, where it will have more than 1,500 employees," The Wall Street Journal reported. "Amazon is taking the space without any of the special tax credits and other inducements the company had been offered to build a new headquarters in the Queens neighborhood of Long Island City, the company said."

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