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US Muslim leaders relieved that Eid holiday won’t coincide with 9/11 anniversary

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For weeks, some U.S. Islamic leaders worried that the Eid al-Adha holiday would fall on Sept. 11, raising the possibility that some non-Muslims would misinterpret celebrations occurring on the solemn anniversary of the al Qaeda attacks of 2001.

Those fears dissipated on Thursday when Saudi Arabian religious authorities announced that the holiday would take place on Sept. 12.

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“At least it doesn’t give an excuse for the Islam haters to falsely claim that Muslims were celebrating on 9/11,” said Ibrahim Hooper, a spokesman for the Council on Islamic Relations. “That was the concern.”

Eid al-Adha commemorates the willingness of Ibrahim, or Abraham, to sacrifice the life of his son for God. The timing of the holiday depends on when the new moon is seen at the start of the Dhu al-Hijjah month, according to the Islamic calendar.

CAIR and other Muslim groups have repeatedly expressed concern about a surge in hate crimes against Muslims in the wake of attacks by extremists in San Bernardino, California, Orlando, Florida, and elsewhere.

“The safety concerns are almost daily issues now,” Hooper said, noting the recent killing of a New York imam and the stabbing of a Muslim woman in the city on Wednesday night.

The suspect in the imam slaying pleaded not guilty in court on Thursday to murder charges.

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(Editing by Frank McGurty and Dan Grebler)


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So much for ‘originalism’ — Trump’s impeachment defense is a constitutional dumpster fire

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In the absence of any exculpatory evidence, Donald Trump's defense against impeachment increasingly relies on arguments that fly directly in the face of the Constitution. Trump himself set the standard last July with his grandiose claim that "Article II says I can do anything I want," which encountered no serious pushback from his fellow Republicans.

This article first appeared in Salon.

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Trump lawyer Purpura busted by MSNBC for lying on the Senate floor during impeachment trial

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Moments after the end of the Saturday's Senate impeachment trial of Donald Trump concluded, MSNBC host Brian Williams pointed out that one of Donald Trump's attorney's lied on the Senate floor about the president's Ukraine scandal-- and he had a clip handy to prove it.

Sharing footage of attorney Mike Purpura stating the higher-ups in Ukraine were unaware that Donald Trump was withholding aid until after the government helped him by announcing an investigation into former Vice President Joe Biden, the MSNBC host called the attorney out.

To make his point that Pupura was being untruthful, Williams then showed a clip of Defense Department official Laura Cooper, who testified that Ukrainians were asking about the delay on the day of the Trump phone call that was the starting point of the impeachment trial.

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‘That dog doesn’t hunt’: Ex-senator burns down fake GOP outrage over Schiff’s ‘heads on pikes’ comment

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Speaking to MSNBC's Brian Williams on Saturday, former Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) had no patience for the GOP senators, including the so-called "moderates" Susan Collins (R-ME) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), complaining about the closing comments by Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) quoting an anonymous source to CBS News saying President Donald Trump and threatened senators would have their "head on a pike" if they voted to convict.

"Several Republican senators took umbrage," said Williams. "Collins is said to have reacted verbally in the chamber. Murkowski was hurt afterwards. Can they really pin a vote on injured feelings?"

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