Tag: Donald Trump

McDonald’s Deletes Tweet Calling Donald Trump a ‘Disgusting Excuse of a President’

McDonald’s deleted this tweet about President Donald Trump.

McDonald’s has deleted a tweet from its corporate Twitter account calling President Donald Trump a “disgusting excuse of a president” with “tiny hands.”

The tweet was posted at 9:16 a.m. on Thursday and deleted shortly after.

“@realDonaldTrump You are actually a disgusting excuse of a President and we would love to have @BarackObama back, also you have tiny hands,” the deleted tweet read.

McDonald’s responded with a second tweet about an hour later, saying its account was “compromised.”

“Twitter notified us that our account was compromised,” the follow-up tweet said. “We deleted the tweet, secured our account and are now investigating this.”

The account has 151,000 followers and has continued to respond to McDonald’s customers since the tweet. McDonald’s hired Robert Gibbs, the former press secretary to President Barack Obama, in 2015 to be its global chief communications officer.

Trump does have a history with McDonald’s, he once appeared in a commercial alongside Grimace:

And he posted a photo of his McDonald’s meal on his plane last May during a campaign trip:

Instagram Photo

Trump has talked about being a fan of the fast food brand, praising it for its cleanliness and saying he prefers fish sandwiches, Big Macs and Quarter Pounders in an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper last February.

“It’s great stuff,” Trump told Cooper during the town hall interview. “One bad hamburger, you can destroy McDonald’s. One bad hamburger and you take Wendy’s and all these other places and they’re out of business. I like cleanliness, and I think you’re better off going there than maybe some place that you have no idea where the food is coming from.”

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Donald Trump’s Bracket: Trump Declines NCAA Bracket Picks for ESPN

Over the last eight years, it has become an annual tradition for basketball fans to compare their NCAA tournament picks with the president. While president, Barack Obama collaborated with ESPN each year for “Barack-otology”. Fans hoping to see Donald Trump’s bracket picks will be disappointed. The president has declined to participate in the event this year.

“We expressed our interest to the White House in continuing the presidential bracket. They have respectfully declined,” ESPN said in a statement.

Despite turning down the offer, the White House has expressed interest in a future collaboration with the network. “We look forward to working with ESPN on another opportunity in the near future,” White House spokeswoman Hope Hicks told The Washington Post.

Trump does have ties to the sports industry, but does not appear to be a massive college basketball fan. Trump attended the Army-Navy college football game last fall, a tradition Army fans hope he keeps as the Black Knights broke a 14-game losing streak.

“It is humbling, it’s a great honor but it’s a great responsibility, and when you see these incredible people — we just want to be strong, and they want to be strong. You don’t see this kind of spirit anywhere,” Trump told CBS (via The Hill).

Trump took a slight jab at the quality of football as this clip shows.

According to The Washington Post, Trump owns 17 golf courses and is an avid golfer. He played a number of sports at the New York Military Academy and was a standout first baseman on the baseball team. He also owned a USFL football team as explored by the “30 for 30” documentary Small Potatoes: Who Killed the USFL?.

Trump tweeted after the New England Patriots defeated the Atlanta Falcons in the Super Bowl. His relationship with Tom Brady and Bill Belichick has been well documented.

ESPN’s Andy Katz spoke to The Washington Post about why the bracket segment with Obama became so popular. He noted it worked because he loved basketball not simply because he was president.

“The bracket idea worked because President Obama follows basketball and is passionate about the sport. He wasn’t as dialed in to every player or team but had conversational knowledge to offer his own analysis on the NCAA tournament for the men’s and women’s game. Baracketology was a success because it was clear he was a fan of the sport and the NCAA tournament, like millions of other Americans,” Katz told The Washington Post.

He may not be living in the White House, but it did not stop Obama from filling out a bracket. Obama released his bracket picks on his foundation’s website for both the men’s and women’s NCAA tournaments. Click here to see a full rundown of Obama’s picks. Obama’s Final Four is Duke, Arizona, Kansas and North Carolina.

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Looking for a good bracket name? Heavy ranks the best funny names for 2017 March Madness.

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Who Are the Judges on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals?

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit building is seen February 6, 2017 in San Francisco, California. (Getty)

President Donald Trump again criticized the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals this week, the court that will hear any appeal of a Hawaii judge’s recent decision to halt the administration’s revised travel ban.

In a campaign-style rally on Wednesday night, Trump referred to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals as being “much overturned” and complained that his new travel ban was blocked even though it was written to address the 9th Circuit’s complaints.

Trump said in his Nashville speech that the judge who blocked his travel ban, Derrick Watson, is part of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. That is actually not the case; although the 9th Circuit has jurisdiction over Hawaii, Derrick Watson is a part of the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii.

Still, if the Trump administration is to appeal Watson’s decision, they will have to return to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, the court that decided last month not to reinstitute the travel ban. So who are the judges who make up this 9th Circuit, and where do they all fall politically?

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals is the largest appellate court in the United States. It is so large, in fact, that Republican Senator Jeff Flake recently introduced a bill, the Judicial Administration and Improvement Act of 2017, which has the express purpose of breaking the court into two. Congress has been attempting to break up the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals since the 1990s.

A total of 29 judges make up the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, although four of those seats are currently vacant. Of the 25 currently-active judges, there are 10 Clinton appointees, six George W. Bush appointees, seven Barack Obama appointees, one Ronald Reagan appointee, and one Jimmy Carter appointee.

On Wednesday, five judges on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, all George W. Bush appointees, voiced support for President Donald Trump’s travel ban, saying that the president has the authority to suspend immigration as Trump did. Those judges were Alex Kozinski, Jay Bybee, Consuelo Callahan, Carlos Bea and Sandra Ikuta.

Here’s a look at the judges who are currently active on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals:

  1. Sidney Runyan Thomas – A Bill Clinton appointee who assumed office in 1996. In 2014, he became the chief judge of the Ninth Circuit. Thomas was one of President Barack Obama’s possible choices to replace John Paul Stevens on the Supreme Court, but Obama ended up picking Elena Kagan instead.
  2. Stephen Reinhardt – A Jimmy Carter appointee who assumed office in 1980. Reinhardt is known for being extremely liberal. “I was a liberal from a very young age,” he told California Lawyer. “I think I was born that way.” His decisions are reversed by the Supreme Court at a higher rate than most other judges.
  3. Alex Kozinski – A Ronald Reagan appointee who assumed office in 1985. In 1993, he reached a notable decision in an intellectual property case in which Wheel of Fortune‘s Vana White sued Samsung for parodying her likeness in a TV ad. Kozinski said, “Overprotecting intellectual property is as harmful as underprotecting it. Creativity is impossible without a rich public domain.” In another case, in which Mattel sued MCA Records over the song “Barbie Girl,” Kozinski wrote, “The parties are advised to chill.”
  4. Susan P. Graber – A Bill Clinton appointee who assumed office in 1998. In 2013, she ruled that a California law prohibiting mental health professionals from engaging in gay conversion therapy is constitutional, writing, “Without a doubt, protecting the well-being of minors is a legitimate state interest,” according to the Los Angeles Times.
  5. M. Margaret McKeown – A Bill Clinton appointee who assumed office in 1998. One notable decision of hers came in 2007 when she said the display of a cross at a nature reserve was unconstitutional because it was akin to the federal government endorsing a religion. This decision was reversed by the Supreme Court.
  6. Kim McLane Wardlaw – A Bill Clinton appointee who assumed office in 1998. Before serving on the 9th Circuit, Wardlaw volunteered for Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign, and she was also a delegate at the Democratic National Convention in 1992.
  7. William A. Fletcher – A Bill Clinton appointee who assumed office in 1998. He authored the decision of Demers v. Austin, which said that academic faculty members are protected by the First Amendment; the plaintiff in that case was a professor who was criticizing his school’s administration and who was punished for doing so.
  8. Ronald M. Gould – A Bill Clinton appointee who assumed office in 1999. In 2002, he removed an injunction against a rule prohibiting the building of new roads in underdeveloped areas of national forests, according to The Recorder. He has been described as a moderate.
  9. Richard A. Paez – A Bill Clinton appointee who assumed office in 2000. When Clinton nominated Paez, Jeff Sessions, who is now the U.S. attorney general but was then a senator, lead a campaign against him. Sessions took issue with Paez having accepted a plea agreement allowing John Huang, a central figure in the 1996 campaign finance controversy, to avoid going to jail, according to The New York Times.
  10. Marsha S. Berzon – A Bill Clinton appointee who assumed office in 2000. In 2009, she ruled that a San Francisco resolution which condemned the Vatican for its position on same-sex marriage was constitutional, saying that it would be a difference case if the resolution condemned the Vatican for its teaching on something like transubstantiation.
  11. Richard C. Tallman – A Bill Clinton appointee who assumed office in 2000. However, Tallman himself is a Republican. He is also a judge on the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review, a court which reviews denials of FISA warrants.
  12. Johnnie B. Rawlinson – A Bill Clinton appointee who assumed office in 2000. She is the first African-American woman to serve on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. In 2014, she ruled in favor of keeping protections intact for the delta smelt, an endangered species of fish.
  13. Jay Bybee – A George W. Bush appointee who assumed office in 2001. He previously served as assistant attorney general for the Office of Legal Counsel, and he authored the 2002 torture memos which said that enhanced interrogation techniques like waterboarding are legal.
  14. Consuelo María Callahan – A George W. Bush appointee who assumed office in 2003. She was floated as a possible Supreme Court nominee to replace Sandra Day O’Connor in 2005, but Bush ultimately selected Samuel Alito.
  15. Carlos T. Bea – A George W. Bush appointee who assumed office in 2003. He is from Spain and was almost deported for allegedly dodging the draft during the Korean War, but a judge ruled in his favor. He later became a nationalized citizen. Above the Law refers to him as “refreshingly conservative, on a famously (or infamously) liberal court.”
  16. Milan D. Smith, Jr. – A George W. Bush appointee who assumed office in 2006. He has authored the most opinions of any judge on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. In United States v. Henry, he upheld the conviction of a man who had made a homemade machine gun, saying that this is not protected by the Second Amendment because machine guns are “dangerous and unusual weapons” that law abiding citizens don’t usually have.
  17. Sandra Segal Ikuta – A George W. Bush appointee who assumed office in 2006. She wrote the opinion in United States v. Baldrich, a case involving a man who plead guilty to six counts of robbery and who argued that the court violated his right to due process because it did not disclose a probation officer’s confidential sentencing recommendation, according to Ninth Circuit Blog. The court ruled against the defendant.
  18. N. Randy Smith – A George W. Bush appointee who assumed office in 2007. He wrote the dissent in Perry v. Brown, the case in which the 9th Circuit found that California’s same-sex marriage ban was unconstitutional.
  19. Mary H. Murguia – A Barack Obama appointee who assumed office in 2011. In 2011, she acquitted Elton Simpson, who had allegedly lied to the FBI about intending to travel to Somalia to commit acts of terror. She felt that there was not enough evidence of Simpson’s intentions. He later attacked an art exhibit featuring cartoon images of Mohammad in Texas.
  20. Morgan Christen – A Barack Obama appointee who assumed office in 2012. She previously served as a Planned Parenthood board member in the 1990s, and her nomination was opposed by some pro-choice advocacy groups. However, she was confirmed by the Senate in a 95 to 3 vote.
  21. Jacqueline Nguyen – A Barack Obama appointee who assumed office in 2012. She is the first Asian-American woman to serve as a federal appellate judge. She was floated as a possible pick to replace Antonin Scalia, but Barack Obama ended up nominating Merrick Garland.
  22. Paul J. Watford – A Barack Obama appointee who assumed office in 2012. He authored the opinion in City of Los Angeles v. Patela case in which the court ruled against a city ordinance in which police could conduct unannounced investigations of hotel registries without a warrant. He was also floated as a possible Supreme Court nominee of Barack Obama’s in 2012.
  23. Andrew D. Hurwitz – A Barack Obama appointee who assumed office in 2012. In Citizen Publishing Co. v. Miller ex rel Elleithee, he ruled that a newspaper that ran an ad calling for the murder of Muslims was protected by the First Amendment.
  24. John B. Owens – A Barack Obama appointee who assumed office in 2014. He earned some attention in 2016 for referencing the HBO series Game of Thrones during a decision. In the case of Flores v. City of San Gabriel, he wrote that the court’s interpretation of a part of the Fair Labor Standards Act was “very close to a qyburnian resurrection of [a rejected case law] standard,” according to Above the Law.
  25. Michelle Friedland – A Barack Obama appointee who assumed office in 2014. She was one of three judges who in February 2017 rejected the Trump administration’s request to lift the restraining order against the first travel ban.

In addition, there are 19 Ninth Circuit judges who have senior status: Alfred Theodore Goodwin, J. Clifford Wallace, Procter Ralph Hug, Jr., Mary M. Schroeder, Joseph Jerome Farris, Harry Pregerson, Dorothy Wright Nelson, William Cameron Canby, Jr., John T. Noonan, Jr., Diarmuid Fionntain O’Scannlain, Edward Leavy, Stephen S. Trott, Ferdinand Francis Fernandez, Andrew Jay Kleinfeld, Michael Daly Hawkins, A. Wallace Tashima, Barry G. Silverman, Raymond C. Fisher, and Richard R. Clifton.

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Sebastian Gorka: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

(Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Counterterrorism adviser Sebastian Gorka was already a controversial member of President Donald Trump‘s team. Now, the London-born author is being accused of having membership in the Nazi-affiliated, Hungarian group Vitézi Rend. Leaders of the group told Foreward.com that Gorka is a “sworn member.”

In an interview with TabletMag.com, Gorka insisted that he has never been a member of Vitez Rand.

“I have never been a member of the Vitez Rend. I have never taken an oath of loyalty to the Vitez Rend. Since childhood, I have occasionally worn my father’s medal and used the ‘v.’ initial to honor his struggle against totalitarianism,” Gorka said.

The 46-year-old Gorka is a member of Trump’s Strategic Initiatives group, alongside Jared Kushner and Steve Bannon. He previously worked for Bannon as the National Security Affairs editor of Brietbart from 2014 to 2016.

Here’s a look at Gorka.

1. Vitézi Rend Leaders Say Gorka Is a ‘Sworn Member’ of the Group, Which Is Linked to the Nazis

Leaders of the Vitezi Rend (or Order of Vitez in English) group told Foreward.com that Gorka is a “sowrn member.” The site notes that the State Department considers the group as “under the direction of the Nazi Government of Germany” during World War II.

The group was established in 1920 by Miklos Horthy, who was the Regent of the Kingdom of Hungary from 1920 to 1944 and cooperated with the Nazi government. After the war, the Order of Vitez was one of the pro-Hitler groups banned.

On the night of Trump’s inauguration on January 20, Gorka was seen wearing the badge of the Order of Vitez, a medal that was formally abolished by the Hungarian government by 1948. Gorka’s father received one from Hungarian exiles in 1979 and Gorka has claimed that he wears it to honor the memory of his father, who fled Hungary.

Leaders of the group told Forward.com that he took a lifelong oath of loyalty to the group. The site contacted Gorka for a comment, but he never responded.

Buzzfeed contacted Gorka. “Send a request to White House press,” he told the site.

When asked why Gorka didn’t just tell Forward.com that the allegations were false, a source told TabletMag.com, “These guys genuinely believed that the allegations were so blatantly false and so aggressively poorly-sourced, that no responsible journalist would ever publish them. Is Seb Gorka, whose family literally bears the scars of anti-fascist fights, a secret Nazi cultist? Come on now.”

Recently, Vitezi Rend has made a comeback, and there are actually two parties in Hungary that claim to be heirs to the group, Foreward.com notes. Gorka belonged to the one called “Historical Vitezi Rend,” which isn’t violent, but still follows the nationalist views of the original group.

“This administration has staff with shockingly anti-Semitic pasts and it is hard to imagine that they have nothing to do with the horrifically weak reactions to anti-Semitic hate crimes that we see coming from this administration,” Steven Goldstein, executive director of the Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect, told Buzzfeed. “That Sebastian Gorka cannot even deny that he has links with a Nazi-affiliated group is symptomatic of the grotesque anti-Semitism that has infected the Trump White House.”

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2. Gorka Says He Wears the Medal to ‘Remind Myself Where I Came From’

In an interview with Brietbart Gorka said that he doesn’t wear the medal linked to Vitezi Rend because he’s a Nazi sympathizer. It’s to remind him of his parents, who fled Hungary to the U.K. during the communist regime.

“I’m a proud American now and I wear that medal now and again. Why?” Gorka, who has been a naturalized U.S. citizen since 2012, told Brietbart. “To remind myself of where I came from, what my parents suffered under both the Nazis and the Communists, and to help me in my work today because as far as I’m concerned, groups like the Islamist State, like Al Qaeda — they’re just another kind of totalitarian. They’re not Communists, they’re not Nazis, but they will enslave or kill you if you disagree with them.”

In February, Brietbart also ran a headline calling attempts to label Gorka as a Nazi sympathizer “fake news.” The site’s post was written specifically in response to a blog post by Eli Clifton.

After Gorka’s response was published, Clifton and his editors later updated the post. “Gorka evidently felt compelled today to respond (via Breitbart) indirectly to our post here about his public display of a Vitezi Rend medal at an inaugural ball and on other occasions,” the note reads. “We want to make clear that we respect his devotion to his parents and the commemoration of their experience and suffering. But we in turn are compelled to ask why his father joined a group with a known history of anti-Semitism and collaboration with the Nazis.”

Foreward.com noted in a previous article in February that Gorka did have ties to nationalist politicians in Hungary and was very active in the anti-government protests in 2006.

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3. Gorka Endorses Trump’s Use of ‘Radical Islamic Terrorism’ & Wrote ‘Defeating Jihad’

Gorka’s views mark a dramatic turn from the views of previous administrations. He endorses Trump’s use of the phrase “Radical Islamic Terrorism.” While the Bush and Obama administrations tried to frame the War on Terror as a war against terrorists, not Islam, Gorka doesn’t see it that way. In 2016, he wrote the book Defeating Jihad: The Winnable War.

“Our enemy is the global jihadi movement, a modern totalitarian ideology rooted in the doctrines and martial history of Islam,” the synopsis for the book reads. “Taking his cue from the formerly top-secret analyses that shaped the U.S. response to the communist threat, Dr. Gorka has produced a compelling profile of the jihadi movement—its mind and motivation—and a plan to defeat it.”

“As the president said, we will ‘obliterate’ groups like ISIS and wipe the scourge of radical Islamic terrorism from the face of the earth,” Gorka told the Washington Times in February.

Gorka was also excited to hear Trump use the phrase “Radical Islamic Terrorism” during the inauguration. “When he used those three words today — radical Islamic terrorism — he put the marker down for the whole national security establishment,” Gorka said on Fox News, notes the Washington Post.

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4. Gorka’s Colleagues Question His Credentials as a ‘Counterterrism Expert’

The rest of the counterterrorism community has an overall negative view of Gorka, criticizing his credentials and wondering how he could be considered an expert on Islam. Gorka has been known to not take this criticism lightly. For example, in February, Newsweek obtained a recording of Gorka threatening to sue terrorism expert Michael S. Smith II, a Republican, for criticizing Gorka on Twitter. Gorka never responded to comment on the Newsweek story.

“I was like a deer in the headlights,” Smith told Newsweek. “I thought it was a prank. He began by threatening me with a lawsuit.”

Smith further explained, “Gorka asserted my tweets about him merited examination by the White House legal counsel. In effect, he was threatening to entangle me in a legal battle for voicing my concerns on Twitter that he does not possess expertise sufficient to assist the president of the United States with formulating and guiding national security policies.”

Gorka himself does use Twitter, but mostly retweets members of the Trump Administration.

“It’s always personal, always ad hominem,” he said told the Washington Times. “That tells you all you need to know about the other side’s true weakness. They can’t win on the merits of their case, so they ‘play the man, not the ball.’”

Gorka does have a Ph.D. in political science and studied at the University of London and the Corvinus University of Budapest. Before joining the Trump administration, he was a faculty member at Georgetown University.

“He thinks the government and intelligence agencies don’t know anything about radicalization, but the government knows a lot and thinks he’s nuts,” former CIA analyst Cindy Storer told the Washington Post.

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5. Gorka’s Wife Katharine Has Also Been Accused of Islamophobia

In July 1996, Gorka married Katharine Fairfax Cornell, according to a New York Times wedding announcement. Katharine’s father is M. Keen Cornell, president of Cornell Iron Works. She even wrote a book about the company’s history.

Katherine has also written for Brietbart and was an adviser on Ted Cruz’s 2016 presidential campaign. She’s the president of the think tank Council on Global Security. Despite her work with Cruz, Katharine was a member of the Trump transition team.

Like her husband, Katherine has been accused of being Islamophobic. Many of her work on Brietbart focused on Islam.

In a 2014 piece, she defended the five Republican members of Congress who were criticized for calling for an investigation of possible “Muslim Brotherhood influence operations in the Obama administration.” She suggested that a 2014 New York Times article even indirectly confirmed the conspiracy theories.

“If members of Congress or the Department of Justice decide to dig deeper into this issue, their investigation cannot stop at influence-buying of US think tanks but must look into every aspect of America’s national security apparatus,” Katherine wrote.

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Donald Trump Budget Cuts: What Do the 19 Agencies Cut Do?

Donald Trump, with members of his cabinet behind him, gives Director of the Office of Management and Budget Mick Mulvaney a pen after signing an executive order on March 13. (Getty)

On March 16, President Donald Trump unveiled his proposed 2018 budget. It likely won’t be implemented in exactly the way he and his director of the Office of Management and Budget, Mick Mulvaney, dream it will be, but it does paint a clear picture of the administration’s priorities. In addition to cuts to all departments in the government but defense, the president is also proposing to stop funding to 19 independent agencies.

There has been an uproar over Trump’s targeting of the arts, cutting funding for the National Endowment of the Arts and Humanities and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. But Trump also wants to cut funding to the Chemical Safety Board and regional agencies like the Appalachian Regional Commission and the Delta Regional Authority. Many of these agencies have annual budgets less than $200 million, notes the Washington Post.

The budget as proposed will likely not be implemented as is because it has to pass through Congress. It’s only a proposal, showing how the president wants to spend taxpayer money in the future. The 2018 federal budget will not be in place until the start of the U.S. government’s 2018 fiscal year begins in October 2017.

Here’s a look at what these 19 agencies do.

African Development Foundation – This foundation was created in 1980 and began operations in 1984. The agency gives grants for up to $250,000 to communities and small businesses in Sub-Saharan Africa. Its budget for 2017 is $28.2 million.

Appalachian Regional Commission – This is a commission set up to promote the economy in the Appalachian region, which stretches from Southwest New York through Mississippi and includes all of West Virginia and the majority of Pennsylvania. It has a $146 million budget.

Donald Trump budget, Donald Trump budget cuts, Donald Trump 2017 budget

PRES CEO Paula Kerger. (Getty)

Chemical Safety Board – The mission of the Chemical Safety Board is to lead independent investigations into chemical incidents and hazards, as well as promote chemical safety. It requested a $12.436 million budget for the 2017 fiscal year.

Corporation for National and Community Service – This is by far the largest agency Trump is proposing be cut in its entirety. The agency promotes community service across the country and requested a $1.1 billion budget for 2017 in an effort to meet President Barack Obama’s goal to get more Americans involved in their communities.

Corporation for Public Broadcasting – This is the most high-profile target for Trump’s budget cuts. It provides funding for NPR and PBS, as well as local public broadcasters, who take in the majority of the grants handed out. The CPB receives $445.5 million a year and has been an annual target for Conservative Republicans. The CPB says that half of its $445.5 million budget goes to grants for local public TV stations.

Delta Regional Authority – The Delta Regional Authority is much like its counterpart in Appalachia, but covers the states along the banks of the Mississippi River. It has a $25 million budget.

Denali Commission – This regional agency is for Alaska, helping to build that state’s infrastructure. It has a $20 million budget.

Institute of Museum and Library Services – President Obama requested a $230 million budget of the Institute of Museum and Library Services. This agency helps fund local libraries and museums.

Inter-American Foundation – This is another foreign relations agency Trump wants to cut. It focuses on grants for non-governmental organizations throughout Latin America. Its budget is $22 million.

U.S. Trade and Development AgencyThis agency is key to promoting American exports around the world and helping to build the infrastructure to make sure the exports get to where they’re going. It has a $60 million budget.

Donald Trump budget, Donald Trump budget cuts, Donald Trump 2017 budget

Miami artist Claudio Roncoli is among the many recipients of a NEA grant. (Getty)

Legal Services Corporation – This is an agency that has been around since the Nixon administration and helps the poor and veterans have access to legal representation and assistance. It is one of the larger agencies Trump has targeted, with a $375 million budget.

National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities – These two agencies each have $145 million budgets. The goal of the NEA is to promote arts and culture through grants, while the NEH provides grants for arts education.

Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation – This agency‘s budget is $175 million. Also known as NeighborWorks America, the agency has local groups in every state, as well as Puerto Rico, that help lower-income people and communities. Trump has also proposed cutting Meals on Wheels funding.

Northern Border Regional Commission – This is another regional agency and it covers counties in Upstate New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and most of Maine that are along the U.S.-Canada border. Its budget is $8 million.

Overseas Private Investment CorporationThis agency is focused on promoting U.S. investment in third-world countries. It has an $83.5 million budget.

Donald Trump budget, Donald Trump budget cuts, Donald Trump 2017 budget

Wilson Center CEO Jane Harman with David Petraeus at a 2016 summit. (Getty)

United States Institute of Peace – This agency was created by a law signed by President Ronald Reagan in 1984 to produce analyses of international crises. It has a $35 million budget. Strangely enough, back in 2011, Republican Congressman Jason Chaffetz and then-Democratic Congressman Anthony Weiner joined forces to push for the USIP’s federal funds to be dropped.

United States Interagency Council on HomelessnessThis agency has one goal in mind – helping the homeless. The group has a $4 million budget.

Woodrow Wilson International Center for ScholarsThe Wilson Center is a trust that acts as a think tank, conducting “its own original research on many of the most pressing major global issues and has unique expertise on countries and regions around the world.” In his 2017 budget, President Obama requested $10.4 million for the center.

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Kimberly Dearman: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Kimberly Dearman. (UW-La Crosse file photo)

A University of Wisconsin-La Crosse police dispatcher is accusing the public university of firing her because she praised President Donald Trump’s travel ban.

The UW disputes that Kimberly Dearman was fired because of political speech but is now offering the dispatcher her job back after the controversy hit local media.

Dearman’s comments about Trump came after the university’s chancellor, Joe Gow, penned a campus email denouncing Trump’s travel ban. According to WIZM, the chancellor says of the controversy: “You hear this phrase thrown around, ‘fake news.’ I feel I’m really at the center of that right now.”

Dearman’s side sees it differently.

“Will the taxpayer funded University of Wisconsin protect average employee’s right to comment on the political emails sent out by the leadership of the University of Wisconsin?” a letter from Dearman’s lawyer to the UW System Board of Regents asks.

Here’s what you need to know:

1. The University Chancellor Wrote That He was ‘Shocked’ & ‘Saddened’ by Trump’s Travel Ban

Lee Fehr, Dearman’s lawyer, told Heavy in a written interview that the chancellor “sent out a campus wide email complaining about Trump” in January. On February 1, the chancellor “retracted it in campus wide email in part,” said Fehr. The email was shared on Twitter above.

According to The La Crosse Tribune “Gow’s email said he was shocked and saddened by the” Trump travel ban.

Gow’s original email opened with this paragraph: “Like so many of you, the UWL leadership team and I are shocked and saddened by President Donald Trump’s order prohibiting refugees and people from certain predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States. Here at UWL we do not discriminate based on a person’s religion or country of origin, and it is very troubling to see the leader of our country doing exactly that.”

Among other things, the email stressed “we want to reaffirm our commitment to ensuring a safe and inclusive campus environment for all individuals, regardless of their national origin, citizenship/immigration status, ethnicity, race, religion, sexual orientation, ability and other significant aspects of individual and cultural identity.”

And it said, “We also want to let you know that our university will maintain the privacy of information about the citizenship/immigration status of all individuals, except where required by law or authorized by the individual. Please know that, except where required by law, UWL Police do not assist in immigration enforcement or deportation of any individual, and do not inquire about or report immigration status when performing their duties.”

The La Crosse Tribune reports that Gow then sent out a second email.

“After concerns were raised about Gow’s email about the travel ban, the chancellor sent a second, apologizing for his comments and to make sure they didn’t stifle discussion on campus, which he said is of utmost importance at a university,” the newspaper reported.

The University of Wisconsin-La Crosse is a public university with more than 10,000 students located in western Wisconsin.

2. Dearman’s Lawyer Says She Was Fired After Expressing Support for the Ban & Saying it Would Stop Terrorists From Getting Into the Country

Donald Trump Andrew Jackson, Donald Trump Tennessee, Donald Trump Jackson portrait

(Photo by Michael Reynolds-Pool/Getty Images)

Fehr says that Dearman spoke about Trump and his travel ban in the context of Gow’s email. Here is the letter with supporting documentation that Fehr sent the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents. The letter alleges in part that Dearman “was terminated for comments she made in casual conversation to a co-worker in response to the University of Wisconsin La Crosse Chancellor Joe Gow’s emails.”

“My client was working with a student employee, an American of Asian background. They discussed Gow’s email,” Fehr told Heavy. “She says she supported Trump. She thought he was doing the right (sic) by keeping terrorists out. And those immigrants should go back to where they came from.”

Fehr continued, “Apparently that offended the coworker. My client was fired as you can see from the termination letter for…abusive language conduct…and conduct unbecoming of a university employee. Ms. Dearman was involved in hiring the co worker.”

In the letter, Fehr contended, “In response to UWL’s political emails, Ms. Dearman told a co-worker that she supported President Trump’s position on immigration. In summary, Ms. Dearman stated to a co-worker that she felt Trump was put in bad situation. She felt Trump was doing the correct thing by keeping terrorists out of the United States. She felt that those immigrants should go back where they came from. She was terminated because of her political speech in support of President Trump.”

Dearman’s attorney included a copy of what he said was the original complaint in a March 18 letter to the Board of Regents.

That statement says that both the student and Dearman had received the email from Gow. “Kim proceeded to laugh and say that he deserved the backlash he got from students,” the statement says The student allegedly said to Dearman, “Since you disagree with what he said originally, I assume you take the opposite stance in the political argument.”

Dearman allegedly responded “yes and then continued on to say how we should respect our president and trust that he knows best. She continued to say that people who ‘don’t belong here’ should leave and that Trump is trying to make the best of a bad situation and we as a country should support what he does.”

The student complaint says the student allegedly responded that “most people were upset with the policy passed because Trump was saying that it was to keep terrorists out when in reality the countries that were banned weren’t places that terrorists were known to come from and the places where terrorists did come from weren’t banned.”

Dearman then allegedly “went on for about 5 minutes about how immigrants don’t belong and then turned to look at me and said, ‘but no offense to you.’ She then went on to say how she believe (sic) she wasn’t a racist, but she believed that all immigrants deserved to go back to where they were from,” the student alleged in the complaint, according to Fehr’s letter.

3. UW Disputes That Dearman Was Fired for Political Speech

In an interview with The La Crosse Tribune, Gow denied that Dearman was fired for political speech.

“I want to be very clear,” Gow told the Wisconsin newspaper. “We would never let someone go based on their political beliefs. We always follow due process and policy if anyone is let go.”

Gow also said, according to The La Crosse Tribune: “I am proud of my emails. The issue is the racially charged statements and the fact she was not concerned by that at all.”

The Tribune reports that a letter to Dearman from the university Human Resources Director says “Dearman was investigated after a complaint from a coworker and found to have violated university employee policies against unbecoming conduct and threatening or abusive language.”

According to WIZM radio, “The firing decision, Gow said was about racist — not political — speech and consisted of violating employee policies with threatening or abusive language and behavior that was unbecoming of a university employee.”

The La Crosse Tribune put it this way: “According to Gow, officials received a complaint that Dearman had told a student of Asian descent that the student’s people should go back to where they came from.”

4. Dearman Has Now Been Offered Her Job Back

Initially, Dearman was asked by the university to quit or be terminated, reported Fox 6 Milwaukee.

According to Fehr, “the University admitted it failed to conduct proper due process and offered reinstatement” of Dearman’s job on March 15. The reinstatement revolved around whether the university’s due process requirements were followed.

The Associated Press reports that Gow told the wire service “UW System attorneys said Kimberly Dearman should be rehired because she didn’t get a hearing.”

Gow now wants all firing decisions to come to his office first for review.

Heavy has reached out to UW-La Crosse PR and Gow for comment and will update this story if it’s received.

Gow has been UW-La Crosse chancellor since 2007. According to a university biography, before coming to UWLC, Gow “served as both the Interim President (2006) and Provost (2004-2006) of Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln. And earlier in his career Chancellor Gow was the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Minnesota’s Winona State University (2001-2004), as well as both the Associate Dean of Liberal Arts & Sciences (1996-2001) and the Director of the Communication Studies Program (1990-2001) at Alfred University in Upstate New York.”

He has a journalism degree, the bio says.

A conservative media site criticized Gow in 2013 for writing an email inviting people to view a September 11 memorial on campus and pointing out “the memorial’s cross shape, adding a reminder the state-funded public university doesn’t endorse a specific religion.”

5. A State Lawmaker Wants Further Review of the Situation

On March 14, Fehr said, he “sent the (UW System) Board of Regents a letter requesting answers regarding what the standards are regarding responding to political emails sent out by the Chancellor. If political speech, then when can we expect the resignation of Chancellor Gow?”

A Republican state lawmaker has expressed concern about the entire matter.

State Sen. Duey Stroebl wrote, in part: “In a time when campuses have become bastions for hypersensitivity, Chancellor Gow has perpetrated an environment where a mere complaint could cost a person her job. This does not foster discussion or debate – which many academics claim is the purpose of higher education.”

He added: “UW System should immediately review what happened in this case. There is no excuse for a taxpayer funded institution skipping due process procedures when terminating an employee over free speech.”



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WATCH: Donald Trump Holds Press Conference With Angela Merkel

Today, President Donald Trump welcomed German Chancellor Angela Merkel to the White House. It was the first time the two ever met in person and the meeting ended with a joint press conference in the East Room. You can watch the complete press conference above.

Although today will also end with Trump going to Mar-A-Lago, Merkel is not joining them. Before the press conference, Merkel and Trump will hold meetings closed to the press and after it, will have a working lunch in the State Dining Room. After that, they will go their separate ways.

Merkel and Trump have a somewhat combative relationship, as Trump has criticized Europe for taking in thousands of refugees from Syria. He also criticized her throughout the presidential campaign. This continued into his presidency. During a rally in Florida last month, Trump told supporters, “We’ve got to keep our country safe. You look at what’s happening in Germany, you look at what’s happening last night in Sweden. Sweden, who would believe this. Sweden. They took in large numbers.”

(Photo by Jörg Schüler – Pool/Getty Images)

After Trump’s surprising victory in November, Merkel offered to work with Trump, saying in a statement at the time, “Germany and America are connected by values of democracy, freedom and respect for the law and the dignity of man, independent of origin, skin color, religion, gender, sexual orientation or political views. I offer the next President of the United States close cooperation on the basis of these values.”

Trump has also been complimentary of Merkel in the past. He told Time Magazine in 2015 that he thinks she is “probably the greatest leader in the world today,” adding that she’s “fantastic” and “highly respected.” But when Time picked her over Trump as the 2015 Person of the Year, he tweeted that she was “ruining Germany.”

As the leader of the Christian Democratic Union party, Merkel has been the Chancellor of Germany since November 2005. She is the first woman to hold the office.

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Andrew Napolitano: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know


This week, Fox News legal analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano claimed that the British foreign surveillance agency GCHQ helped President Barack Obama wiretap Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign. The GCHQ called Napolitano’s claims “utterly ridiculous” and Fox News has reportedly pulled him from the network.

On March 20, The Los Angeles Times reported that Fox News hasn’t used Napolitano since Thursday. He was oddly absent during the network’s coverage of Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation hearings.

Sources told the LA Times that Napolitano isn’t expected to be on the network “any time in the near future.” An anonymous source also confirmed to Heavy.com that Napolitano was “benched.”

The 66-year-old Napolitano has been at Fox News since 1998, after serving as a judge in the New Jersey Superior Court from 1987 to 1995. Napolitano, who was born in Newark, New Jersey, is not married. According to Celebrity Net Worth, he has an estimated net worth of $7.5 million.

Here’s what you need to know about Napolitano and the diplomatic incident he started.

1. Fox News Says They Have Seen no Evidence That Obama Surveilled Trump

On March 14, Napolitano appeared on Fox & Friends, claiming that Obama asked British intelligence for surveillance on Trump so it wouldn’t look like the American government was behind it, reports LawNewz. Napolitano claimed that the GCHQ, the British version of the NSA, did the heavy lifting. He also claimed that the man who ordered the surveillance “resigned three days after Trump was inaugurated.”

Napolitano didn’t say who this man was or who his sources were. However, when the New York Times tried to contact Napolitano on March 17, they instead heard from former intelligence officer Larry C. Johnson, the same former Fox News contributor who spread a 2008 hoax about Michelle Obama. Johnson told the Times that Napolitano told him to call the Times and confirm that he was one of Napolitano’s sources for the report. He claimed to have came across the information “from sources in the American intelligence community.”

On March 16, Napolitano’s claims appeared on Fox News’ website in a column, which remains unedited since it was published. However, Fox News did add a link to the GCHQ’s statement.

In his opinion piece, the former judge wrote:

Sources have told me that the British foreign surveillance service, the Government Communications Headquarters, known as GCHQ, most likely provided Obama with transcripts of Trump’s calls. The NSA has given GCHQ full 24/7 access to its computers, so GCHQ — a foreign intelligence agency that, like the NSA, operates outside our constitutional norms — has the digital versions of all electronic communications made in America in 2016, including Trump’s. So by bypassing all American intelligence services, Obama would have had access to what he wanted with no Obama administration fingerprints.

Since there were reports that the U.S. government apologized for citing Napolitano’s report as evidence, Fox News has backed away from the reporting. In a statement on his show, Fox News anchor Shepard Smith said that the network has “no evidence of any kind that the now-President of the United States was surveilled at any time, any way. Full Stop.” He said that the network can’t confirm Napolitano’s “commentary.”

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While doing the media rounds Monday, Kellyanne Conway had to explain Donald Trump’s wiretapping claims and why she suggested microwaves were used.

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2. GCHQ Called Napolitano’s Claims ‘Utterly Ridiculous’ & ‘Should be Ignored’

Although Napolitano never revealed the source for his information, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer repeated the claims during his March 16 press conference. The White House has continued to try to justify Trump’s claims on March 4 that Obama wiretapped him in 2016. The White House has said that Trump was talking about surveillance in general, and didn’t specifically mean “wiretap.”

A spokesman for the GCHQ then told the Telegraph that Napolitano’s allegations are “ridiculous.”

“Recent allegations made by media commentator Judge Andrew Napolitano about GCHQ being asked to conduct ‘wiretapping’ against the then president-elect are nonsense. They are utterly ridiculous and should be ignored,” the spokesman said.

The Telegraph also reported that National Security Adviser Gen. H.R. McMaster and Spicer called Sir Mark Lyall Grant, Prime Minister Theresa May’s National Security Adviser, to apologize. A spokesman for the U.K. government said that they “made clear the allegations were ridiculous and received reassurances that they would not be repeated” after speaking with the U.S. government.

But then, Buzzfeed reported that the Spicer is not apologized. “I don’t think we regret anything,” Spicer told Buzzfeed.

Another official told the New York Times, Trump “didn’t apologize, no way, no how.”

And when Trump was asked about it by a German reporter during his press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Trump said, “All we did was quote a certain very talented legal mind who was the one responsible for saying that on television. I didn’t make an opinion on it. That was a statement made by a very talented lawyer on Fox. And so you shouldn’t be talking to me, you should be talking to Fox.”

Leaders of the intelligence committees in both houses of Congress have said they haven’t seen evidence to back Trump’s wiretapping claim.

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3. Napolitano Sided With 9/11 Conspiracy Theorists in 2010

Back in 2010, even the conservative News Busters took Napolitano to task for appearing to side with Geraldo Rivera on the conspiracies about how the original 7 World Trace Center fell on September 11, 2001.

“It’s hard for me to believe that [WTC7] came down by itself. I was gratified to see Geraldo Rivera investigating it. I’m gratified to see the people across the border interested,” Napolitano said in an interview on conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ radio show. “I think 20 years from now, people will look at 9/11 the way they look at the assassination of JFK today. It couldn’t possibly have been done the way the government told us.”

Napolitano hasn’t said anything on the topic of 9/11 conspiracy theories publicly since, but in September 2016, he praised Congress for overriding Obama’s veto of a bill that would have prevented 9/11 victims and families from suing Saudi Arabia.

The veto override means “that shroud is about to be lifted by plaintiffs’ lawyers, who will bring people from the Saudi government into their offices in New York, put them under oath and ask them questions,” Napolitano said on Fox News. “This essentially becomes law in a couple of minutes. As of this very moment…survivors of 9/11 or their families can sue for damages.”

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4. Napolitano Called the Decision on Trump’s First Immigration Executive Order ‘Intellectually Dishonest’

After the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals refused to reinstate Trump’s first immigration executive order, Napolitano criticized the decision as “intellectually dishonest” and “so profoundly wrong.”

“This is an intellectually dishonest piece of work that the 9th Circuit has produced tonight, because it essentially consists of substituting the judgment of three judges for the president of the United States, when the Constitution unambiguously gives this area of jurisdiction – foreign policy – exclusively to the president,” Napolitano said on Fox News.

A few days later, Napolitano advocated for the creation of a new immigration executive order, which is exactly what Trump did. The new immigration executive order was issued on March 6 and has since been blocked by federal judges in Hawaii and Maryland.

In a March 16 appearance on Fox & Friends, Napolitano criticized the Hawaii judge for judging the executive order on Trump’s intent. He said that the court should only judge an executive order basedd on the exact written works and not go into “psychobabble and try and figure out what the intent was.”

“Basically what the judge said last night in Hawaii was this is a Muslim ban by another name,” Napolitano said. “That’s the way I would summarize this with a very short handle on it. Without getting too much into the weeds, he basically looked at the things that candidate Donald Trump said, that our friend Mayor [Rudy] Giuliani said, that Kellyanne Conway said.”

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5. Napolitano Isn’t a Fan of Abraham Lincoln

Napolitano has an unpopular opinion of President Abraham Lincoln and famously appeared on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart in 2014 to defend his reasons for not liking Lincoln. He appeared on The Daily Show a month after saying on Fox News that he is a “contrarian” on Lincoln, suggesting that slavery could have been brought to an end without the bloody Civil War.

“At the time that [Lincoln] was the president of the United States, slavery was dying a natural death all over the Western world,” Napolitano told Stewart. “Instead of allowing it to die, or helping it to die, or even purchasing the slaves and then freeing them — which would have cost a lot less money than the Civil War cost — Lincoln set about on the most murderous war in American history.”

Napolitano also claimed that Lincoln enforced the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850, which allowed slaveowners to use the federal government to get escaped slaves back, even if they were found in a free state. Politifact rated this claim “mostly false,” noting that the law was enforced inconsistently at the start of the war.

Napolitano didn’t suddenly become anti-Lincoln in 2014. Back in 2007, he wrote The Constitution in Exile: How the Federal Government Has Seized Power by Rewriting the Supreme Law of the Land, which includes a chapter called “Dishonest Abe,” in which me makes the case that many of Lincoln’s actions were unconstitutional.

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PHOTOS: Barron Trump Makes Rare White House Lawn Appearance

US President Donald Trump (R), wife Melania (L) and son Barron (C) make their way to board Air Force One before departing from Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland on March 17, 2017.
Trump is heading to Palm Beach, Florida where he is scheduled to spend the weekend at the Mar-a-Lago estate.(Getty)

The president’s 10-year-old son, Barron Trump, made a rare appearance at the White House on March 17.

Barron was photographed walking with his parents across the White House lawn to Marine One and was then photographed getting off Air Force One with them on the way to Mar-a-Lago, the Florida estate which Trump has called the Winter White House.

barron trump


It looked like the presidential son has undergone a growth spurt (to give you a barometer, Melania Trump stands 5 foot 11 inches tall, and Donald Trump stands 6 foot 2 inches tall. That’s the height on his driver’s license, anyway; the president has said he’s 6 foot 3 inches). The Trumps have carefully shielded Barron from the public eye, and he’s only been seen on select occasions. His mother, First Lady Melania Trump, has said she’s staying mostly in New York until June so that Barron’s school is not disrupted.

barron trump, barron trump white house


The boy’s appearance on the public stage was arguably overshadowed by his mother’s fashion choice, as her red coat by Alice Roi drew attention.

It’s rare for the country to experience a boy growing up in the White House. You have to go back to John F. Kennedy Jr. and 1963, in fact. Many recent presidents have had only daughters. The National Post says Barron Trump, 10, is also the second youngest child to live in the White House in 50 years, after Sasha Obama. Before JFK Jr., you have to go back to 1901 and the boys of Theodore Roosevelt to find sons young enough to live at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

barron trump

US President Donald Trump and his son, Barron, walk to Air Force One before departing from Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland on March 17, 2017. (Getty)

The Obamas, Clintons, Johnsons, and Nixons only had daughters. George W. Bush and his wife, Laura, did too. Other presidents – such as Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, and George H.W. Bush – had sons, but they were adults by the time their fathers entered the White House. Donald Trump will become the oldest president inaugurated, but he’s one of the few recent presidents to have a son under 18 at the time he took office.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Barron and Melania will stay in New York until the end of the school year so as not to disrupt Barron’s schooling. Barron attends a $45,000 a year private school, Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, the Hollywood Reporter reported.

barron trump


According to Time Magazine, earlier in the country’s history, it was more common to see boys in the White House. “In the 19th century, the occupants of the White House had herds of boys. The Lincolns had four. The Grants had three sons and a daughter. The Hayeses had seven sons and a daughter,” wrote Time. “The Garfields had seven kids, five of them sons. Not all of these male heirs lived in the White House — many died young, or were too old to be living with their parents — but several did.”

Here are more photos of Barron Trump on March 17:

barron trump


barron trump


barron and melania trump






barron trump


PHOTOS: Tad Cummins & Elizabeth Thomas, Missing Teacher & Student

See photos of Tad Cummins and Elizabeth Thomas, teacher and student who are on the run from Tennessee. Cummins had posted on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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Jesse Watters: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Jesse Watters is a Fox News journalist who filmed an interview with President Donald Trump earlier this week. The interview will air during his Saturday show Watters’ World at 8 p.m. ET.

Watters has been at Fox News since 2002 and has been a part of The O’Reilly Factor since 2003. He started out as a behind-the-scenes producer, but became an on-camera talent thanks to his on-the-street interviews. He got his own spin-off series Watters’ World in November 2015. Although his show is billed as a “comedic” look at news, he still nabbed a one-on-one interview with the president.

The 38-year-old Watters stirred controversy in October 2016 with an infamous segment where he interviewed residents of New York’s Chinatown. The segment was considered by some to be racially insensitive, but Watters was never punished for it.

You can follow Watters on Twitter and Instagram.

Here’s a look at Watters’ life and career.

1. Watters Called Himself a ‘Political Humorist’ After the Chinatown Segment Fallout

In October 2016, Watters filmed a segment for The O’Reilly Factor, in which he interviewed people in New York’s Chinatown. The segment was filled with racial stereotypes, both in its presentation and with the questions Watters asked. He asked his interview subjects how to bow, if the watches being sold were stolen and if a man sold herbs “for performance,” all while scenes from martial arts movies played and “Kung Fu Fighting” was heard in the background.

At the end of the segment, Bill O’Reilly and Watters sounded surprised that many of the people he talked to knew about American politics. But they also knew that the segment would be controversial.

“It’s gentile fun. I know we’re going to get letters. It’s inevitable,” O’Reilly told Watters.

“It was all in good fun,” Watters said.

Fox News got more than just letters after it aired. New York Mayor Bill De Blasio tweeted that Watters’ “vile, racist behavior” has “no place in our city.”

The Asian American Journalists Association criticized the segment. They did manage to set up meetings with Fox News executives, getting them to agree to receiving pitches from AAJA members.

Initially, Watters wrote a non-apology on Twitter. “My man-on-the-street interviews are meant to be taken as tongue-in-cheek and I regret if anyone found offense. As a political humorist, the Chinatown segment was intended to be a light piece, as all Watters World segments are,” Watters wrote.

“I was surprised, at the time, with the blowback,” Watters told Business Insider in a December interview. “I didn’t see it coming, and that’s on me. I understand I did offend a lot of people, and I’m very sorry for that. People took issue with some of the statements I made, and some of the reaction to the Chinatown segment, and I understand that. And it’s a learning experience — I definitely learned a lot from it. But it’s a new day, and we are moving forward with it.”

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2. Watters Says Bill O’Reilly Comes Up With Many of the Ideas for ‘Watters’ World’ Segments

Jesse Watters Donald Trump, Jesse Watters bio, Jesse Watters Fox News, Watters World Host

Jesse Watters and President Donald Trump. (Instagram/Jesse Watters)

Watters has been working for O’Reilly for over a decade, so the two have clearly developed a rapport. In an interview with Business Insider about his career, Watters said that it’s his boss who comes up with many of the ideas for Watters’ World segments.

“Usually he’ll say, like, ‘This is kind of how I want you to approach it,’ and then he’ll give me one line, and then I have to fill in the rest,” Watters told the site. “Bill is very understanding of the backdrop of the segment. I think because he was a field guy for so many years, he’s very interested in aesthetics behind the Watters’ World, where it’s being shot, why it’s being shot there.”

“I think he’s either living vicariously through me, or he’s reliving things he did back in the day,” Watters told Business Insider of O’Reilly.

Watters loves his “ambush” style man-on-the-street interviews, which have often been criticized by the media. After all, the style is usually employed more by comedians than journalists.

“I don’t pay attention to a lot of that stuff that they write,” he told Business Insider of his critics. “It doesn’t really bother me that much. I stand by my work, especially the confrontations. There are heroes and villains out there in the media landscape, in the news landscape, in the political landscape. People sometimes get called out, they react how they react. And I’m proud of what I do.”

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3. His Wife Noelle Used to Host a Fox News Fashion Segment

Watters is married to Noelle Inguagiato Watters, who used to host a fashion segment on FoxNews.com called iMag Style.

As Walking Points Memo reports, in 2014, Watters said on Outnumbered that Noelle told him that she voted for President Barack Obama in 2012.

“When I was dating my wife, we were very simpatico politically,” Watters told his co-hosts. “And then all of a sudden, after 2012, she told me she voted for Obama. And I was like, ‘Oh my gosh! Are you kidding me?’”

It turned out she was. “She got me good,” Watters joked.

However, it’s worth noting that Politico reported back in 2012 that an FEC filing revealed that Watters donated $500 to the Obama Victory Fund 2012 and even listed “News Corp.” as his employer.

The couple live on Long Island. Celebrity Net Worth estimates that he has an estimated net worth of $1 million.

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4. Journalist Amanda Terkel Accused Watters of Stalking Her While on She Was on Vacation

In 2009, Huntington Post journalist Amanda Terkel, who is now a senior political reporter for the site, accused Watters of stalking her. At the time, Terkel was writing for Think Progress and she had recently published a story about O’Reilly’s past comments on rape victim Jennifer Moore when he was slated to speak at an Alexa Foundation to support rape victims at the time.

On March 23, Terkel wrote that she was “followed, harassed and ambushed” by Watters while on vacation because she wrote a piece that O’Reilly didn’t like. She wrote that Watters and his cameraman followed her on a two-hour drive from Washington, DC to Winchester, Virginia.

“Shortly after checking into our lodgings, we emerged and immediately saw two men walking toward us calling out my name,” Trekel wrote. “Watters said he was from Fox News, but never said his or his companion’s name, nor did he say he was with The O’Reilly Factor.”

During an edited version of the segment that aired, O’Reilly called Terkel a “villain,” claiming that she was criticizing the Alexa Foundation, which she said she never did. They accused her blog of causing “pain and suffering” to rape victims.

Terkel talked about her experience with Watters on CNN in 2015:

When New Yorker writer Hendrik Hertzberg also wrote a piece criticizing O’Reilly, he was ambushed by Watters. After the segment aired, O’Reilly claimed that Hertzberg declined an invitation go on The O’Reilly Factor. “That’s an outright lie,” the writer told Politico in 2008.

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5. Watters Grew Up in Philadelphia & Has a Degree in History

Watters was born in Philadelphia and graduated from Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut with a degree in history. His family moved to Long Island while he was in high school.

In a 2015 interview with Philly.com, Watters explained that he had initially wanted to go into finance aftr college, but he didn’t do well in that field. He then tried to work in politics directly, working for Dora J. Irizarry’s failed campaign for New York Governor.

“I got hired at Fox News, because I like politics and I like television. And one day, [Bill] O’Reilly said, ‘Watters! I want you to go down to Alabama and confront this judge,’” Watters recalled. “So I go all the way down to Alabama and run up to some judge who’d given a sex offender a soft sentence, and I ended up confronting the wrong guy, in my first-ever time in the field. So I got off to a rocky start. But after that, I kind of got the hang of things.”

Watters told Philly.com that both of his parents are liberal. “But my parents always brought me up to have discipline and respect for other people and the belief that hard work pays off,” Watters told Philly.com. “They didn’t raise me to be who I am politically, but I think they gave me a lot of the values and the resources to kind of shape my own path.”

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