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US judge rejects Trump directives easing ability to fire federal workers

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A U.S. federal judge on Saturday rejected key elements of President Donald Trump’s May executive orders that would make it easier to fire federal employees and reduce their ability to bargain collectively.

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, said in a court order that Trump’s orders, which also would reduce the amount of time low-performing employees had to improve their performance before being fired, “undermine federal employees’ right to bargain collectively.”

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Trump signed three executive orders in May that administration officials said would give government agencies greater ability to remove employees with “poor” performance, obtain “better deals” in union contracts and require federal employees with union responsibilities to spend less time on union work.
The directives drew immediate criticism from the American Federation of Government Employees, which said the moves would hurt veterans, law enforcement officers and others.

Jackson ruled that while the president has the authority to issue executive orders relating to federal labor relations, the orders cannot “eviscerate the right to bargain collectively” as envisioned in a long-standing federal statute.

“The President must be deemed to have exceeded his authority in issuing (the orders),” Jackson ruled.

Reporting by Yasmeen Abutaleb in Washington; Editing by Leslie Adler and Matthew Lewis

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‘Train-wreck of a witness’: Analysts nail ‘obstructive’ Corey Lewandowski for proving the Democrats’ case

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Political commentator Catherine Rampell disagreed with New York Times columnist Frank Bruni that the Democrats faltered during the hearing with Corey Lewandowski Tuesday. Former state and federal prosecutor Elie Honig called Lewandowski a "train-wreck of a witness."

She explained that Democrats had an extremely low bar: they had to prove Trump obstructed justice and that Corey Lewandowski gave one of the examples of such obstructions. In that sense, Rampell said they accomplished their goals.

"I don’t think this was a great day for Corey Lewandowski," she began. "This is a guy who went on TV and announced to the world -- apparently at the same time he is also trying to fundraise for Senate -- that he lies most of the time. Except when he's under oath."

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CNN

WATCH: Ana Navarro keeps shouting down Trump booster — even as CNN host cuts to commercial

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President Donald Trump cheered on his top Hispanic advisor Steve Cortez, who appeared before a New Mexico audience. Trump asked Cortez which he loved more, Hispanics or America, which prompted CNN's Ana Navarro to blast the president for racism. Meanwhile, Trump's latest CNN shill cried "political correctness."

"Look, I suspect he didn't want to offend Steve Cortez and I suspect Steve Cortez was not offended," Navarro said. "But really what a stupid thing to say. Right? To somehow ask the question about whether you love the country more than you love Hispanics -- they are one and the same."

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Pennsylvania Republican senator arrested and charged with possession of child pornography

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According to a release from Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, Republican state Sen. Michael Folmer has been arrested and charged with possession of child pornography.

The release said that the investigation began as the result of a CyberTip about Tumblr discovering that a user had uploaded child pornography onto their site. It ultimately led to the home of Folmer in Lebanon, PA. A search warrant yielded images on Folmer's phone.

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