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Trump and Jeffrey Epstein were the only two guests at a party with 28 women flown in for the ‘entertainment’: NYT report

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A new report from the New York Times on Tuesday revealed new details about the years-long friendship between President Donald Trump and the convicted sex offender and financier Jeffrey Epstein.

The most bizarre revelation was the account of a party, told by Florida businessman George Houraney, at which Trump and Epstein were the only guests:

It was supposed to be an exclusive party at Mar-a-Lago, Donald J. Trump’s members-only club in Palm Beach, Fla. But other than the two dozen or so women flown in to provide the entertainment, the only guests were Mr. Trump and Jeffrey Epstein.

The year was 1992 and the event was a “calendar girl” competition, something that George Houraney, a Florida-based businessman who ran American Dream Enterprise, had organized at Mr. Trump’s request.

“I arranged to have some contestants fly in,” Mr. Houraney recalled in an interview on Monday. “At the very first party, I said, ‘Who’s coming tonight? I have 28 girls coming.’ It was him and Epstein.”

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The report contains no allegations of misconduct at the party, but it’s a disturbing account given that Epstein has just been indicted on charges of sex trafficking young teenage girls. (Houraney and his girlfriend Jill Harth have accused Trump of sexual abuse of Harth).

Some of Trump’s public comments suggest that he was aware at the time of Epstein’s interest in having sex with underage girls. The Times report also indicates that during the 2016 campaign, Trump believed he could use Epstein’s ties to Bill Clinton to damage Hillary Clinton. It even indicates that David Pecker of The National Enquirer suggested he had damaging information about Clinton and Epstein, though it never became a major issue in the race.

On Tuesday in the Oval Office, Trump downplayed his relationship to Epstein. He said he knew him “like everybody else in Palm Beach knew him … he was a fixture in Palm Beach.” But the Times reported that they were details a much closer relationship than those remarks suggest. In fact, they were reportedly involved together in a business venture, and when it fell apart, their relationship soured.


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In a secluded region in Russia’s Arctic they are rejecting Putin in rare protest

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Lyudmila Laptander, an activist advocating autonomy for her mineral-rich Nenets region in the Russian Arctic, worries authorities are planning to sacrifice its traditions for the promise of economic enrichment.

"If Nenets is merged with another region, I worry that no one will look after our language or our traditions, and that our small villages in the tundra will be forgotten," said Laptander, 61, a member of the Yasavey cultural group.

The autonomous region on the edge of the Arctic Ocean was gripped by protests in May against the government's plans to integrate it with neighbouring Arkhangelsk.

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People are paying to hire this donkey to crash their Zoom meetings

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The coronavirus pandemic has led millions of people to embrace meetings via Zoom, but admittedly, those can be as tedious as in-person conferences.

So one animal sanctuary in Canada, in dire need of cash after being forced to close to visitors, found a way to solve both problems.

Meet Buckwheat, a donkey at the Farmhouse Garden Animal Home, who is ready to inject some fun into your humdrum work-from-home office day -- for a price.

"Hello. We are crashing your meeting, we are crashing your meeting -- this is Buckwheat," says sanctuary volunteer Tim Fors, introducing the gray and white animal on a Zoom call.

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Republican senators are suddenly trying to social distance — from Trump

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There’s something interesting in today’s news:

A number of Republican Senators have said they are skipping the Republican National Convention this year. The convention was originally scheduled in Charlotte, North Carolina, but at Trump’s insistence was relocated to Jacksonville, Florida, last month. The stated reason was that Democratic North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper would not commit to permitting a full convention out of concerns about the spread of coronavirus, but the abrupt switch to Florida, less than 80 days before the convention, still seems odd to me. Regardless, the switch has created a new problem: Florida is in the midst of a dramatic spike in coronavirus cases, setting a record for new cases in a single day during the weekend —11,458—and running low of ICU beds.

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