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Marine Le Pen’s niece to US conservatives: Our far-right movement is ‘standing side by side’ with Trump

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Hardline former French MP Marion Marechal-Le Pen told American conservatives Thursday that her nation’s far-right movement was “standing side by side” with the supporters and nationalist policies of President Donald Trump.

“Just like you, we want our country back,” the telegenic 28-year-old niece of failed presidential candidate Marine Le Pen said from the main stage of the Conservative Political Action Conference, held each year just outside Washington.

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Marechal-Le Pen is believed to be the first member of France’s far-right National Front (FN) to address CPAC, a controversial move for a conference where US Vice President Mike Pence spoke to the crowd just minutes earlier, and where Trump himself is Friday’s headliner.

Marechal-Le Pen, who decided not to run in last May’s French election, urged the crowd not to see her as the “terrifying” figure she said the American press makes her out to be, but as an ideological partner.

“Here at CPAC, we are once again standing side by side in another battle for freedom,” she said, speaking mainly in English.

“I am not offended when I hear President Donald Trump say ‘America first,'” she said to a loud cheer.

“In fact, I want America first for the American people, I want Britain first for the British people, and I want France first for the French people!”

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She praised conservatives for putting their ideals at the forefront. “Let us build on what you have achieved here, so that on both sides of the Atlantic, a conservative agenda may prevail.”

Marechal-Le Pen made little mention of dropping out of politics, but did note that she recently launched a school of management and political science in order to “train the leaders of tomorrow.”

“The challenge is immense,” she said.

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Marechal-Le Pen has insisted that her project is not partisan, and that the school will not be allied with any political party.

Her hardline stance on immigration, Islam and abortion commands a loyal grassroots following, but her party has recently shut down speculation that the young scion of the Le Pen family was making a political comeback.

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Marechal-Le Pen also took aim at the European Union, a popular target for the far right.

The EU has “imposed” its laws and regulations on her country, she said, and politically correct immigration policies were altering France’s character as a millenium-old Catholic nation.

“The result is the development of an Islamic counter society in France,” she contended.

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“This is not the France that our grandparents fought for,” she said, in an apparent nod to her grandfather Jean-Marie Le Pen, the founder of the FN.

“Vive la France!” an attendee shouted out.


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Carl Bernstein: There are 7-9 ‘wobbly’ Republicans who want witnesses but Mitch McConnell is trying to block them

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In a CNN panel discussion Wednesday, notorious Watergate reporter Carl Bernstein revealed that there are seven to nine Republican senators who are wavering after the compelling argument that the House has provided for the impeachment. The problem, however, is that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is refusing to allow any break from the party line.

"I think this is a hugely damaging narrative that was laid out today, and that Mitch McConnell understands, and has understood for a while that this hugely damaging narrative was going to affect his members," said Bernstein. "And that his strategy -- I've talked to some Republicans about this -- #MidnightMitch is to wear out his own members so that they don't vote for more witnesses because there are six, seven, eight, nine wobbly Republicans."

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Republican Kevin McCarthy gets taken down by former top GOP colleague

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Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) was attacked by a former Republican colleague who alleged McCarthy and his fellow members of Congress have allowed the House GOP to become the official shill for the White House.

In a profile for the New York Times, former Oversight Committee Chairman Tom Davis (R-VA) shamed the GOP House for the way that a once-respectable institution has fallen.

“Congress no longer operates as an independent branch of government, but as an appendage of the executive branch,” said Davis. “He is made for that role.”

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Former senator reveals to Maddow how one brave Democrat can reveal key document in impeachment trial

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Near the end of Wednesday's impeachment trial, Chief Justice John Roberts announced that an agreement had been made to allow senators to read supplemental testimony from Vice President Mike Pence aide Jennifer Williams.

The document will remain classified, despite claims that there is no classified material in the document, only evidence that is damning to the president.

"In terms of this document potentially being improperly classified, which is something that has been raised in writing by Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) and raised on the floor of the Senate tonight by Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA)," MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow noted. "Obviously, it was the vice president's office that said it was classified, they are getting publicly criticized for that. If it has been improperly classified and it should be something that the public can see, who adjudicates that?"

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