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‘I have absolutely no idea what he means’: Experts baffled at Trump’s claim that ‘redemption money’ is paying for border wall

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When Donald Trump was running for the presidency, one of his signature promises was that Mexico would pay for his border wall. That never came to pass, but during one of his campaign rallies in January, he offered the following explanation:

“You do know who’s paying for the wall, don’t you? Redemption. From illegal aliens that are coming in,” he said. “The redemption money is paying for the wall.”

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Speaking to CNN, experts said that the term “redemption money” makes no sense.

“I don’t know what the President means by redemptions. I have never heard the word used in this context before,” said Stephen Yale-Loehr, a professor of immigration law practice at Cornell University. “In any event, the President is wrong. Money appropriated by Congress and money diverted from the Department of Defense is paying for construction of the wall, not immigrants.”

Other immigration researchers speaking to CNN agreed. But according to Theresa Cardinal Brown of the Bipartisan Policy Center, Trump could have been referring to remittances, but nevertheless, she said there is no magical mechanism that would allow Mexico to pay for the wall.

“I have absolutely no idea what he means by that. Clearly the US is paying for the wall,” she said.

Read the full fact check over at CNN.

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While Trump tries to remake the federal courts, progressive state prosecutors are making huge inroads

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On the national level, President Donald Trump is appointing judges by the dozens to positions on US federal courts, ensuring a conservative tilt for a generation.

But on the local level, a small group of progressive state prosecutors have been elected, and they have big ideas about criminal justice reform.

Parisa Dehghani-Tafti -- who is now the top prosecutor in northern Virginia's Arlington county in the Washington suburbs -- knows she is not the "typical" candidate for the job.

"I am an immigrant. I grew up very poor. I have done some (public) defender work," says the 46-year-old, who was born in Iran, and is a mother to two black children.

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2020 Election

Trump lobs late-night attacks at Bloomberg after debate flop: ‘Worst in the history of debates!’

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President Donald Trump took a victory lap around Mike Bloomberg after the billionaire candidate flopped in his first Democratic presidential debate.

The former New York City mayor qualified for the debate in Las Vegas just last week, and his rivals were waiting for him with pointed attacks -- especially Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), who eviscerated his record with women -- while Bloomberg appeared unprepared.

"Mini Mike Bloomberg’s debate performance tonight was perhaps the worst in the history of debates, and there have been some really bad ones," Trump tweeted Thursday at 1:19 a.m.

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Devin Nunes’ hometown newspaper blasts ‘authoritarian’ lawmaker: ‘He should step aside’ — and get a job on Fox News

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Rep. Devin Nunes’ war against the free press reached a new low on Tuesday when he barred The Fresno Bee from covering a major water forum in Tulare, Calif.The forum covered matters of crucial public interest. The chief executive officer of Friant Water Authority, a public agency, moderated the event. David Bernhardt, secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior, also attended. Yet despite the fact that the McClatchy reporters had reserved tickets, Nunes’ staff banned them.“The Fresno Bee learned at 10 a.m. Tuesday that its reporters would not be allowed to cover the event, after receiving ... (more…)

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