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Ken Cuccinelli: The Statue of Liberty poem was talking about ‘people coming from Europe’

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On Tuesday, Acting Director of Citizenship and Immigration Services Ken Cuccinelli defended the Trump administration’s new rule barring legal immigrants from public programs by changing the words on the Statue of Liberty’s poem.

On CNN’s “OutFront,” Cuccinelli denied he had done any such thing when anchor Erin Burnett grilled him — and then claimed that the important thing to keep in mind was that the Statue of Liberty was talking about “people coming from Europe.”

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“You heard me play you this morning when you quoted the Emma Lazarus,” said Burnett.

“I wasn’t quoting it. I was answering a question,” said Cuccinelli.

“I’m sorry you were giving your version of what you thought the poem should say,” said Burnett.

“I was answering a question, I’m not rewriting poetry,” said Cuccinelli.

“‘Give me your tired and poor who can stand on their own two feet and not become a public charge,'” said Burnett. “I played you saying it.”

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“Right I was answering a question,” said Cuccinelli. “I wasn’t writing poetry. Don’t change the facts. You’re twisting this like everybody else in the left has done all day today.”

“You’re saying it’s important to stand your own two feet,” said Burnett.

“Yes,” Cuccinelli agreed.

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“But the poem doesn’t say that, right?” said Burnett.

“I didn’t bring up the poem, an NPR reporter did, and now you,” said Cuccinelli. “I didn’t bring it up. I’ll answer substantive intelligent questions. Ask one.”

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“The poem reads ‘Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore, send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!'” said Burnett. “Wretched poor refuse. That’s what the poem says America is supposed to stand for. So what do you think America stands for?”

“Well, of course, that poem was referred back to people coming from Europe, where they had class-based societies. Where people were considered wretched if they weren’t in the right class,” said Cuccinelli.

Watch below:

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Here’s how Mike Pence could step in to sabotage the impeachment trial in the Senate

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Vice President Mike Pence could ultimately end up playing a significant role in President Donald Trump's impeachment trial — and ensure that the case against the president isn't even properly presented.

Pence, being the vice president, is also president of the Senate. And as such, he has the power to resolve ties when senators deadlock. In terms of the final vote to convict, Pence will not need to break any ties, because 67 votes are required. But many other aspects of the Senate trial will be decided by a simple majority, including the rules package, and whether to override Chief Justice John Roberts' decisions on what evidence and testimony is admissible. And so even if a few Republicans break with their party on these issues, Pence may be able to step in and ensure the trial is conducted the way Trump wants it to be.

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‘Useful Idiots’: Tonight’s impeachment debate will show how the GOP is now the ‘Grand Old Putin’ party

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When Congress begins debating changes in the articles of impeachment Wednesday night, we will see on full display how Congressional Republicans, to defend Donald Trump, have given up any pretense of principle, the rule of law and loyalty to the country.

House Republicans have embraced Trump’s win-for-Trump-at-all-costs philosophy.

Think of them as the kind of cowards who would never jump on a hand grenade, but would instinctively push the person next to them onto the explosive. This is a political extension of the economic philosophy that we’ve got ours, tough for you, in Republican tax, spend and regulatory policy,

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Republicans plan to flood House with amendments to sabotage impeachment debate: CNN

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On Wednesday, CNN congressional correspondent Manu Raju reported that House Republicans are planning to use the markup process for the articles of impeachment, scheduled to take place on Thursday, to introduce a flood of amendments designed to cripple the process.

None of these amendments are likely to have the votes to pass — but they will force House Democrats to waste time voting them down rather than crafting the particulars of their case.

"Tomorrow is when we see the real art of legislating on Capitol Hill," said Raju. "The House Judiciary Committee will consider votes on amendments to the articles of impeachment. Republicans are expected to offer a flurry of amendments aimed at undercutting the articles, to gut the articles, and the democrats are expected to beat back every single one of them. Those votes expected to be along party lines."

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