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March 31, 2015

Hillary Clinton also used iPad, BlackBerry for e-mail


WASHINGTON - Hillary Rodham Clinton e-mailed her staff on an iPad as well as a BlackBerry while secretary of state, despite her explanation she exclusively used a personal e-mail address on a homebrew server so that she could carry a single device, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press.

The dispute over her e-mails has cast a shadow over Clinton, the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination who is widely expected to announce her candidacy next month.

The State Department released a total of four e-mails between Clinton and her top advisers as part of a Freedom of Information Act request filed in 2013 by the AP, which sought Clinton's correspondence with senior advisers over a four-year period relating to drone strikes overseas and U.S. surveillance programs.

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March 28, 2015

Head of House Benghazi probe says Hillary Clinton wiped email server 'clean'


Hillary Clinton wiped her email server "clean," permanently deleting all emails from it, the leader of the House committee investigating the 2012 terror attacks in Benghazi said Friday.

Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., said the former secretary of state has failed to produce a single new document in recent weeks and has refused to relinquish her server to a third party for an independent review, as Gowdy has requested.

"While it is not clear precisely when Secretary Clinton decided to permanently delete all emails from her server, it appears she made the decision after October 28, 2014, when the Department of State for the first time asked the secretary to return her public record to the Department," Gowdy said in a statement. “Not only was the secretary the sole arbiter of what was a public record, she also summarily decided to delete all emails from her server ensuring no one could check behind her analysis in the public interest.”

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March 27, 2015

U.S. Caves to Key Iranian Demands as Nuke Deal Comes Together


LAUSSANE, Switzerland—The Obama administration is giving in to Iranian demands about the scope of its nuclear program as negotiators work to finalize a framework agreement in the coming days, according to sources familiar with the administration’s position in the negotiations.

U.S. negotiators are said to have given up ground on demands that Iran be forced to disclose the full range of its nuclear activities at the outset of a nuclear deal, a concession experts say would gut the verification the Obama administration has vowed would stand as the crux of a deal with Iran.

Until recently, the Obama administration had maintained that it would guarantee oversight on Tehran’s program well into the future, and that it would take the necessary steps to ensure that oversight would be effective. The issue has now emerged as a key sticking point in the talks.

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March 24, 2015

Former IRS Employees Can Look At Your Tax Returns


Could Lois Lerner still take a look at your tax returns on IRS computers? 

It sounds preposterous, but a new watchdog report says former IRS employees still have access to IRS computer systems long after they have no official business with the information. 

The report is by the U.S. Government Accountability Office, an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for Congress. The GAO investigates how the federal government spends taxpayer dollars. In the case of IRS security, the report says not well.

This report cites significant deficiencies in the security of IRS financial reporting systems. Millions of Americans who are legally required to file taxes are fearful about fraud. 

The report says the IRS needs to continue improving controls over financial and taxpayer data. In the case of former IRS workers with continuing access to IRS data systems, they need to be cut off.  More

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March 23, 2015

Government pays to house poor in luxury apartments – Get a job and be kicked out


Virginia – Verde Point is a self-described “luxury apartment” complex with a rooftop pool and “personal wine storage” that is currently accepting public housing assistance recipients who will live there practically for free, courtesy of the taxpayers — at least until they become gainfully employed and their incomes rise.

That’s when the pool parties and wine tastings end and they will have to downgrade to a more middle-class abode.

The Gramercy is another luxury apartment, also in Arlington, Va., where holders of the federal vouchers formerly known as Section 8 can live, taking advantage of its “massage room and sauna” and “clubroom with bar.” Also included, according to its promotional materials, are a “first-class sports club,” “theater/screening room,” and computer room.

As with those at Verde Point, federally-subsidized Gramercy residents can face the unpleasant choice between living in luxury on public assistance or getting a job and having to move to a neighborhood with far fewer amenities. More

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March 19, 2015

U.S. Omits Iran and Hezbollah From Terror Threat List


An annual security assessment presented to the U.S. Senate by James Clapper, the director of National Intelligence, has excluded Iran and the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah from its list of terror threats to U.S. interests, despite both being consistently included as threats in previous years.

The unclassified report, issued by Clapper on February 26 and entitled the Worldwide Threat Assessment of the U.S. Intelligence Communities, was published by the Times of Israel amid Israeli concerns that Iran was omitted simply because of Tehran’s efforts to combat ISIS.

In a previous report from January 2014, Clapper included Iran and Hezbollah in the ‘Terrorism’ section, writing that both “continue to directly threaten the interests of U.S. allies. Hizballah [sic] has increased its global terrorist activity in recent years to a level that we have not seen since the 1990s”. Iran was also given its own sub-heading in the ‘Terrorism’ section of such assessments in 2011, 2012 and 2013.  More

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CLINTON FOUNDATION KEEPS DONORS SECRET


NEW YORK - In 2008, Hillary Clinton promised Barack Obama, the president-elect, there would be no mystery about who was giving money to her family's globe-circling charities.

She made a pledge to publish all the donors on an annual basis to ease concerns that as secretary of state she could be vulnerable to accusations of foreign influence.

At the outset, the Clinton Foundation did indeed publish what they said was a complete list of the names of more than 200,000 donors and has continued to update it. 

But in a breach of the pledge, the charity's flagship health program, which spends more than all of the other foundation initiatives put together, stopped making the annual disclosure in 2010, Reuters has found.

In response to questions from Reuters, officials at the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) and the foundation confirmed no complete list of donors to the Clintons' charities has been published since 2010. CHAI was spun off as a separate legal entity that year, but the officials acknowledged it still remains subject to the same disclosure agreement as the foundation.  More

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Obama: make voting mandatory

WASHINGTON – They say the only two things that are certain in life are death and taxes. President Barack Obama wants to add one more: voting.

Obama floated the idea of mandatory voting in the U.S. while speaking to a civic group in Cleveland on Wednesday. Asked about the influence of money in U.S. elections, Obama digressed into the topic of voting rights and said the U.S. should be making it easier for people to vote.

Just ask Australia, where citizens have no choice but to vote, the president said.

"If everybody voted, then it would completely change the political map in this country," Obama said, calling it "potentially transformative." Not only that, Obama said, but universal voting would "counteract money more than anything."

Disproportionately, Americans who skip the polls on Election Day are younger, lower-income and more likely to be immigrants or minorities, Obama said. "There's a reason why some folks try to keep them away from the polls," he said in a veiled reference to voter identification laws in a number of states.  More

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March 18, 2015

Obama-linked nonprofit filed for new IRS status after accusation of meddling in Israeli election

The American nonprofit OneVoice Movement – under scrutiny by a U.S. Senate panel over possible links to a campaign to oust Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – quietly filed paperwork that would allow it to engage in political activism after two leading Republican lawmakers questioned its use of government funds, FoxNews.com has learned.

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-N.Y., sent a letter Jan. 29 to Secretary of State John Kerry asking whether the group ­– as a recipient of almost $350,000 in recent grants from the Obama administration’s State Department – had violated its tax-exempt status when it began backing the virulently anti-Netanyahu Victory 15 campaign in Israel earlier that month.

Cruz also publicly asked whether Obama – who’s had a well-documented adversarial relationship with Netanyahu – had “launched a political campaign against” the Israeli leader in the run-up to the election which was held on Tuesday.  More

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State Dept: No Records Indicating Hillary Signed Separation Form

After days of fending off the question, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki admitted on Tuesday that the department has no record of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton signing a separation form that could open her up to perjury charges.

Form OF-109 is a document required to be signed by all State Department employees as they exit the department. 

In it, the employee claims, under penalty of perjury, that he or she has turned over all relevant communications to the government at the time of his or her departure.

By turning over her private e-mails at the end of 2014, two years after leaving office, Clinton violated that agreement — if, in fact, she signed it.  More

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March 17, 2015

PLAN TO KILL OBAMACARE


House Republicans, unveiling their first budget blueprint since the party took control of Congress, issued a sweeping spending plan Tuesday that calls for complete repeal of ObamaCare, major changes to Medicare and controversial moves to boost defense spending despite tight budget limits.

GOP leaders say their budget would balance in less than 10 years, and in that time cut spending by $5.5 trillion compared with current projections.

The spending plan stands little chance of ever being signed by President Obama, but makes clear that the party is not dialing back its ambitions despite a rocky start to the latest congressional session.

After some internal debate over the Republican strategy for taking on the Affordable Care Act, the budget plan renews GOP calls to repeal and replace the law. More

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Federal agencies made $125B in improper payments last year


Federal agencies made $125 billion in improper payments last year, including tax credits to people who didn't qualify, Medicare payments for treatments that might not be necessary and unemployment benefits for people who were actually working, said a government report released Monday.

The level of improper payments was a new high after several years of declines. In addition to fraud, the errors included overpayments and underpayments, as well payments made without proper documentation.

While the errors were spread among 22 federal agencies, three programs stood out: Medicare, Medicaid and the Earned Income Tax Credit.

Together, the three programs accounted for more than $93 billion in improper payments, according to the report by the Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress. More

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March 16, 2015

Lt. Governor Peter Kinder (R-MO) said Attorney General Eric Holder “on many occasions” seemed to “be inciting the mob.”


Sunday on Fox News Channel’s “America’s News HQ,” Lt. Governor Peter Kinder (R-MO) said Attorney General Eric Holder “on many occasions” seemed to “be inciting the mob.”

Kinder said, “He is sounding the right notes today, this afternoon. I just wish he had been more judicious and measured in his comments since the August 9.

Because Mr. Holder came in and seemed on many occasions to be inciting the mob. He seemed to be putting his weight on the one side of the scales of justice and not backing up law enforcement. 

And if he is now, you know, backing up law enforcement mode, then I will be among those cheering him. And I hope that’s the way he is from now on.”

When asked if he had spoken to Mr. Holder directly, Kinder said, “No, no, no, he doesn’t bend to speak with people like me.  More

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Clinton camp: read every email - 32,000 were private and deleted them


Hillary Clinton’s camp late Sunday issued a significant clarification about the steps they say were taken to review thousands of personal emails before they were deleted, claiming her team individually read “every email” before discarding those deemed private.

Clinton spokesman Nick Merrill made the clarification in a written statement to Fox News. This comes after the former secretary of state’s office revealed last week that while more than 30,000 “work-related” emails were turned over to the State Department, nearly 32,000 were deemed “private” and deleted.

This admission raised questions over how her team decided to get rid of those messages. Merrill on Sunday clarified an earlier fact sheet that described some of those methods but did not say every email was read.

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March 14, 2015

Michelle And Barack Take Separate Planes To Film TV In California -- On Same Day


President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama were both in California at the same time yesterday, but the pair took separate flights for two different television appearances.

Yesterday, President Obama traveled aboard Air Force One to California for a TV appearance with comedian Jimmy Kimmel. The First Lady, however, flew on a separate plane to California for a TV appearance with Ellen.

The popular daytime television host tweeted a selfie with Michelle Obama yesterday at about the same time that President Obama was filming himself reading mean tweets with Kimmel.

When asked by reporters on Air Force One if the President and the First Lady saw each other yesterday, White House Deputy Press Secretary Eric Schultz replied, “I don’t believe so,” adding that he was “not even sure they overlapped.”  More

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March 7, 2015

Cruz: Menendez probe politically motivated


Des Moines, Iowa -- Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) suggested Saturday that the Justice Department’s criminal corruption charges against Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) are political retribution against the New Jersey Democrat for opposing the White House’s negotiations with Iran.

Cruz made the allegations to a throng of reporters jammed into the corner of a tent outside the Iowa Ag Summit in Des Moines without even having been asked about the Menendez criminal charges.

“The announcement this week by the Justice Department that they were bringing charges against Bob Menendez — I will point out that the timing seems awfully coincidental that … in the very week that Bob Menendez showed incredible courage to speak out and call out President Obama for the damage that his policy is doing to our national security … the Justice Department announces they’re moving forward with the criminal prosecution,” Cruz said.

“It raises the suggestion to other Democrats that if you dare part from the Obama White House, that criminal prosecutions will be used potentially as a political weapon against you as well,” he added. More

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March 6, 2015

DOJ reportedly preparing criminal charges against Democrat Sen. Menendez - Recently critical of President Obama


The Justice Department reportedly is preparing to charge New Jersey Democratic Sen. Robert Menendez with corruption counts over allegations he used his office to help a Democratic donor.

CNN and The New York Times reported Friday that the charges are being prepared. The FBI would not comment; Menendez' office also did not confirm that charges are forthcoming, other than to defend the senator's conduct.

In a statement, the senator's spokeswoman Tricia Enright said: "As we have said before, we believe all of the Senator's actions have been appropriate and lawful and the facts will ultimately confirm that. Any actions taken by Senator Menendez or his office have been to appropriately address public policy issues and not for any other reason."

The case against the powerful lawmaker, two years in the making, comes at a sensitive time for Menendez -- and the Obama administration. Menendez has been a leading critic of the direction of current diplomatic talks with Iran over its nuclear program, and has helped draft legislation meant to check the administration's power to negotiate a deal. More

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March 3, 2015

Hillary violated federal law requiring official messages to be retained for the record

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton used a personal email account to exclusively conduct official business during her time at the State Department, a move that raises questions about access to the full archive of her correspondence, as well as the possibility that she violated federal law requiring official messages to be retained for the record.

The existence of the account was discovered by the House select committee investigating the deadly 2012 attacks on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, and was first reported by The New York Times.

Clinton did not even have a government email address during her tenure as America's top diplomat, which lasted from 2009 to 2013, and The Times reports that her aides took no action to preserve her emails on department servers, as required by the Federal Records Act.

Instead, the paper reports, Clinton's advisers selected which of her emails to turn over to the State Department for archival purposes after going through tens of thousands of pages of correspondence. The department said late Monday that it had received 55,000 pages of Clinton's emails as part of a request made to previous secretaries of state to turn over any official documents they may have had in their possession. More

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March 2, 2015

FEDS RAID TEXAS POLITICAL MEETING

In a deliberate “show of force,” federal and local police forces raided a political meeting in Texas, fingerprinting and photographing all attendees as well as confiscating all cell phones and personal recording devices.

Members of the Republic of Texas, a secession movement dedicated to restoring Texas as an independent constitutional republic, had gathered Feb. 14 in a Bryan, Texas, meeting hall along with public onlookers.

They were debating issues of currency, international relations and celebrating the birthday of one of their oldest members. The group, which describes itself as “congenial and unimposing,” maintains a small working government, including official currency, congress and courts.

According to MySanAntonio.com: “Minutes into the meeting a man among the onlookers stood and moved to open the hall door, letting in an armed and armored force of the Bryan Police Department, the Brazos County Sheriff’s Office, the Kerr County Sheriff’s Office, agents of the Texas district attorney, the Texas Rangers and the FBI.  More

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February 28, 2015

Daily Beast retracts story on Scott Walker

Another major media outlet has apologized after getting a story about Scott Walker wrong. Last week, it was the New York Times; now, it’s The Daily Beast.

The Daily Beast has retracted an article from one of its college columnists that claimed that the Wisconsin governor’s budget would cut sexual assault reporting from the state’s universities.

The post, published Friday, cited a report from Jezebel that wrongly interpreted a section of the state budget to mean that all assault reporting requirements were to get cut altogether.

In fact, the University of Wisconsin system requested the deletion of the requirements to get rid of redundancy, as it already provides similar information to the federal government, UW System spokesman Alex Hummel told The Associated Press on Friday.  More

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February 26, 2015

Treasury used unauthorized $3 billion for Obamacare

The U.S. Treasury Department has rebuffed a request by House Ways and Means Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan, R- Wis., to explain $3 billion in payments that were made to health insurers even though Congress never authorized the spending through annual appropriations.

At issue are payments to insurers known as cost-sharing subsidies. These payments come about because President Obama’s healthcare law forces insurers to limit out-of-pocket costs for certain low income individuals by capping consumer expenses, such as deductibles and co-payments, in insurance policies. In exchange for capping these charges, insurers are supposed to receive compensation.

What’s tricky is that Congress never authorized any money to make such payments to insurers in its annual appropriations, but the Department of Health and Human Services, with the cooperation of the U.S. Treasury, made them anyway. More

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Obama to ban bullets by executive action, threatens top-selling AR-15 rifle

Washington DC – It’s starting. As promised, President Obama is using executive actions to impose gun control on the nation, targeting the top-selling rifle in the country, the AR-15 style semi-automatic, with a ban on one of the most-used AR bullets by sportsmen and target shooters.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives this month revealed that it is proposing to put the ban on 5.56 mm ammo on a fast track, immediately driving up the price of the bullets and prompting retailers, including the huge outdoors company Cabela’s, to urge sportsmen to urge Congress to stop the president.

Wednesday night, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, the Republican chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, stepped in with a critical letter to the bureau demanding it explain the surprise and abrupt bullet ban. The letter is shown below.

The National Rifle Association, which is working with Goodlatte to gather co-signers, told Secrets that 30 House members have already co-signed the letter and Goodlatte and the NRA are hoping to get a total of 100 fast.

“The Obama administration was unable to ban America’s most popular sporting rifle through the legislative process, so now it’s trying to ban commonly owned and used ammunition through regulation,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director of the NRA-ILA, the group’s policy and lobby shop. “The NRA and our tens of millions of supporters across the country will fight to stop President Obama’s latest attack on our Second Amendment freedoms.” More

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Today's Stupid Quote by John Kerry

John Kerry:"Despite ISIL, despite the visible killings that you see and how horrific they are, we are actually living in a period of less daily threat to Americans and to people in the world than normally; less deaths, less violent deaths today, than through the last century."

The top U.S. intelligence official on Thursday gave a drastically different assessment than Secretary of State John Kerry of the terror threat -- declaring 2014 the deadliest year for global terrorism ever recorded, after Kerry claimed that threat was diminishing.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, testifying on Capitol Hill, catalogued the growing terror-fueled violence in stark terms.

"When the final accounting is done, 2014 will have been the most lethal year for global terrorism in the 45 years such data has been compiled," Clapper told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

He offered statistics that would appear to challenge other administration officials' claims that the country and world are safer today.  More

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