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‘Answer yes or no’: Al Franken grills stammering Facebook exec who won’t commit to refusing foreign ads

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In perhaps the tensest moment during the Facebook, Twitter and Google testimonies before the Senate Judiciary subcommittee, Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) grilled Facebook Vice President and General Counsel Colin Stretch over how they missed Russia’s massive ad buys paid for in rubles.

“How did Facebook, which prides itself in connecting data points, somehow not make the connection that electoral ads paid for in [Russian] rubles were coming from Russia?” Franken inquired.

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“I think in hindsight, we should have had a broader lens,” Stretch responded. “There were signals we missed.”

Stretch continued his remarks, but Franken cut him off.

“People are buying ads on your platform with rubles, they’re political ads,” Franken said. “You put billions of data points together all the time, that’s what I hear that these platforms do, they’re the most sophisticated things invented by man, ever. Google has all knowledge that man has ever developed. You can’t put together rubles with a political ad and go, ‘hmm, those two data points spell out something bad?'”

After Stretch said that “in hindsight, it’s something [Facebook] missed,” Franken sighed, put his head in his hands, and asked him directly if the company will “commit to not accepting political ads paid for with foreign money in the future?”

Rather than answering directly, Stretch brought up the company’s authorization documentation requirements, which appeared to anger Franken.

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“Please answer yes or no,” the Minnesota senator said. “I‘m asking you a question, just answer yes or no. Can you do that? You’re sophisticated. You’re the chief legal counsel for Facebook. Please answer yes or no.”

The back-and-forth between the two continued until Franken was out of time, and was not permitted to have more time to grill the Facebook legal counsel.

Check out the tense exchange below, via CSPAN.

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Boom: Joy Reid explains why Andrew Cuomo ‘is the president’

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MSNBC host Joy Reid asserted on Sunday that Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) is now the acting president of the United States for many Americans.

During a segment on MSNBC, a guest lamented that Donald Trump is the president instead of Cuomo, who has gotten national attention over his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

"I have to admit that I am a fan of Andrew Cuomo," former ABC News anchor Carole Simpson said, "and wish very much that he were president of the United States now running a national battle against this virus."

"I mean, kind of, isn't he?" Reid said of Cuomo. "I mean, isn't he actually [the president]? I mean, in a way, he is the president."

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Navy captain fired by Trump over coronavirus letter tests positive for COVID-19: report

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According to a report from the New York Times, the Navy captain relieved of his duties by the Trump administration over a letter drawing attention to dangerous health conditions on his aircraft carrier has tested positive for COVID-19.

The report states, "Capt. Brett E. Crozier, the Navy captain who was removed from command of the coronavirus-stricken aircraft carrier U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt, has tested positive for Covid-19, according to two Naval Academy classmates of Crozier’s who are close to him and his family."

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Georgia GOP governor orders several beaches to reopen days after acknowledging he’s woefully uneducated on coronavirus spread

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The Atlanta Journal Constitution reported today that Kemp is reopening Tybee Island and other beaches along the Georgia coast.

Local officials in several of Georgia’s coastal communities reacted with fury on Saturday after Gov. Brian Kemp’s shelter-in-place order simultaneously reopened several of the state’s most popular beaches.

The stupidity and lack of regard of human life on display in Republican-run states is beyond criminal and inhumane. In fact, there are no words to describe this. Because the longer these so-called “leaders” make decisions that are in the best interests of, I don’t know who, the longer it will take to come out of this pandemic that is claiming so many thousands of lives.

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