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Republican Duncan Hunter facing new fraud charges as re-election looms

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Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) is facing a new round of election fraud charges over filing forms that claimed he didn’t know where members of his own extended family work, reports the San Diego Union-Tribune.

The Federal Elections Commission requires political campaigns to document a donor’s employer and occupation. However, Hunter’s campaign claims it “did not know — and was unable to find out” that information for more than a dozen people, including Hunter’s own uncle, James H. Hunter of Idaho.

Although it’s not directly related to the wide-ranging charges Hunter is facing for illegally spending campaign funds, it does go to how Hunter got the money and documented his possible conflicts of interest.

The U-T already found possible conflicts. On March 28, 2016, six top-level executives for a San Diego defense contractor gave Hunter a combined $3,250. The very next day, the company announced that it got a $2.3 million contract from the U.S. Army for virtual reality software.

“The occupation and employer information is very important to identify which special interests are supporting a candidate,” attorney Brett Kappel, an expert in campaign laws and ethics rules, told the U-T. “In some cases, the occupation may be a clue that company employees may have been reimbursed for their contributions — not many busboys make $1,000 contributions. Without the occupation and employer information, the voters are left in the dark.”

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Iran says new ‘mentally retarded’ Trump sanctions mean ‘permanent closure’ of diplomacy

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Iran said Tuesday that new US sanctions targeting its supreme leader meant a “permanent closure” of diplomacy, while the country’s president labelled the White House “mentally retarded” as tensions between Tehran and Washington escalated.

US President Donald Trump signed an executive order imposing the sanctions against Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Monday, taking a dramatic and unprecedented step to increase pressure on Iran after Tehran’s downing of an American drone last week.

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‘Dangerous linguistic power’: A historian explains how Trump weaponizes nicknames

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Is Donald Trump the modern day Earl Long?

A three-time Louisiana governor, Long mastered the art of political ridicule seven decades ago by weaponizing nicknames. The hilarious names Long pinned on his rivals, and the rollicking stories he told about them, riveted audiences bored by puffed-up rhetoric.

While Long’s stunts may be remembered as silly hijinks, there was a sly, often deadly serious, purpose to his technique. He used it to get voters to laugh at his foes and to put them on the defensive––a place politicians never want to be. Tucked within Long’s jests were razor-sharp attacks aimed at exploiting opposition weaknesses––hidden swords inside a pea-patch cloak.

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Walmart got a $2.2 billion tax cut — now it’s laying off workers

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Walmart announced it will lay off hundreds of workers in North Carolina despite receiving billions in tax cuts that the Republican Party and President Trump claimed would spur job growth.

The giant retailer will lay off about 570 employees and close its corporate office near the Charlotte airport, despite signing a 12-year lease just four years earlier, the Charlotte Business Journal reported.

The work done at the Charlotte facility will be outsourced to a firm in Arkansas, according to the report.

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 ENOUGH IS ENOUGH 

Trump endorses killing journalists, like Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Online ad networks are now targeting sites that cover acts of violence against dissidents, LGBTQ people and people of color.

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