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Pompeo to assure India on tech visas

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US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will assure India on a visit next week that the United States is not planning to slash visas commonly used by Indian technology workers, an official said Friday.

The United States has backed internet behemoths and major corporations in opposing India’s orders that all online data be stored within the country, a move to ensure that authorities in New Delhi have access to it.

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A US official denied reports that Washington was linking the issue to H-1B visas for professionals, for which the vast majority of recipients are Indian.

“We attach great importance to the US-India relationship,” the official told reporters on condition of anonymity.

“Indians have contributed under the H-1B program to the US economy and I think the secretary will be able to assure the Indian leadership that we have no plans to place caps on H-1B work visas for nations that are having foreign companies store data locally,” she said.

The official acknowledged that President Donald Trump’s administration was undertaking a review of the H-1B program but said it was “not targeted at India.”

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“It’s completely separate from our ongoing discussion with India on the importance of ensuring better trade,” she said.

The United States each year grants 85,000 H-1B visas, which are valid for three years to professionals sponsored by employees.

Trump ran for the White House vowing to crack down on immigration, including by building a wall on the Mexican border, denying entry to all Muslims and restricting H-1Bs which he said disadvantaged American workers.

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But Trump has appeared to moderate his views on the H-1Bs, saying earlier this year that he wanted to find a way for the top-skilled workers to stay in the United States and become citizens.

Pompeo will be seeking to build defense relations with India during his visit starting Tuesday, which will include a speech in New Delhi on the future of the relationship between the world’s two largest democracies.

The trip comes after the convincing re-election of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a Hindu nationalist who has supported stronger ties with Washington.

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‘You lost’: Internet mocks Trump for cheering on ‘great vote’ — that Republicans lost

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Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), who sits on the House Intelligence Committee accidentally mistook a satirical article with a fake transcript of President Donald Trump's call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky on July 25. While Schiff apologized for the error, Trump has called for his immediate impeachment.

Impeachment is outlined in the U.S. Constitution and the section of the founding document gives examples of what they meant by "high crimes and misdemeanors." It does not cite accidentally reading the wrong transcript aloud. Members of Congress cannot be impeached and censure is a toothless resolution that is meaningless.

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2020 Election

Facebook reveals how Russia is already trying to manipulate the 2020 presidential election

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On Monday, in a series of announcements by Facebook, the company revealed it had shut down four new foreign interference operations originating from Russia and Iran. According to their announcement, one appears to be linked to the Russian troll agency, the Internet Research Agency (IRA), and was targeting the U.S. 2020 presidential election.

The company removed 50 Instagram accounts and one account on Facebook that originated in Russia and focused primarily on the United States.

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Republicans’ laughable effort to attack Adam Schiff lands with a thud

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Republicans' effort to castigate California Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff, the chair of the House Intelligence Committee spearheading the impeachment inquiry, met a quick and sudden defeat on Monday in a vote of 218-185.

Spurred on by President Donald Trump's attacks on the chairman, GOP House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy led an effort to censure Schiff on the House floor. On what grounds? It's almost too absurd to make up: lying.

The party of Donald Trump — who lied more times in the hours before the censure vote than Schiff even stands accused of — actually claimed that it's the California lawmaker who should be called out for dishonesty.

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