Category Archives: World

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Reports: Confirmation of Trump’s Pick to Lead VA May Be in Jeopardy

Confirmation of U.S. President Donald Trump’s pick to lead Veterans Affairs agency may be in jeopardy. 

The Washington Post reported late Monday that Senate lawmakers have postponed the confirmation hearing for Rear Admiral Ronny Jackson after top Republicans and Democrats raised concerns about his qualifications. 

Jackson was scheduled to testify before the Senate Committee for Veterans Affairs on Wednesday. 

Two sources told CNN that committee members have been informed of allegations of improper conduct at more than one stage in Jackson’s career. 

Jackson, who currently serves as Trump’s physician, is already facing scrutiny over his lack of experience managing an agency as large as the VA — the U.S. government’s second-largest agency.

Jackson gained a degree of fame unusual for White House physicians in 2017 when he took questions from the White House press corps on national television, discussing at length the president’s physical exam.

Trump, the oldest first-term president in American history, was plagued at the time by questions about his physical health, weight and mental stability. But Jackson gave the president top rating. “The president’s overall health is excellent,” Jackson declared at the time. 

Trump picked Jackson to replace David Shulkin, a holdover from the Obama era.

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Reports: Confirmation of Trump’s Pick to Lead VA May Be in Jeopardy

Confirmation of U.S. President Donald Trump’s pick to lead Veterans Affairs agency may be in jeopardy. 

The Washington Post reported late Monday that Senate lawmakers have postponed the confirmation hearing for Rear Admiral Ronny Jackson after top Republicans and Democrats raised concerns about his qualifications. 

Jackson was scheduled to testify before the Senate Committee for Veterans Affairs on Wednesday. 

Two sources told CNN that committee members have been informed of allegations of improper conduct at more than one stage in Jackson’s career. 

Jackson, who currently serves as Trump’s physician, is already facing scrutiny over his lack of experience managing an agency as large as the VA — the U.S. government’s second-largest agency.

Jackson gained a degree of fame unusual for White House physicians in 2017 when he took questions from the White House press corps on national television, discussing at length the president’s physical exam.

Trump, the oldest first-term president in American history, was plagued at the time by questions about his physical health, weight and mental stability. But Jackson gave the president top rating. “The president’s overall health is excellent,” Jackson declared at the time. 

Trump picked Jackson to replace David Shulkin, a holdover from the Obama era.

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New NASA Boss Gets ‘Hearty Congratulations’ From Space

NASA’s new boss is already getting cheers from space.

 

Immediately after being sworn into office Monday by Vice President Mike Pence, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine took a call from the three U.S. astronauts at the International Space Station who offered “hearty congratulations.” The Oklahoma congressman became the 13th administrator of NASA, filling a position that had been vacant for more than a year.

 

“America loves what you guys are doing,” Bridenstine, a former naval aviator, told the astronauts. He promised to do his best “as we reach for new heights and reveal the unknown for the benefit of humankind.”

 

This is the 60th anniversary year for NASA .

 

Bridenstine is the first elected official to lead NASA, something that had bogged down his nomination last year by President Donald Trump. The Senate approved his nomination last week by a narrow vote of 50-49. Monday’s swearing-in ceremony took place at NASA headquarters in Washington.

 

Pence noted that the space agency, under Bridenstine’s direction, will work to get astronauts back to the moon and then, with help from commercial space and international partners, on to Mars.

 

“NASA will lead the way,” said Pence, who heads the newly resurrected National Space Council.

 

Charles Bolden Jr., a former space shuttle commander and major general in the Marines, was NASA’s last official administrator. The space agency was led by Acting Administrator Robert Lightfoot in the interim. Lightfoot retires from NASA at the end of this month.

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New NASA Boss Gets ‘Hearty Congratulations’ From Space

NASA’s new boss is already getting cheers from space.

 

Immediately after being sworn into office Monday by Vice President Mike Pence, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine took a call from the three U.S. astronauts at the International Space Station who offered “hearty congratulations.” The Oklahoma congressman became the 13th administrator of NASA, filling a position that had been vacant for more than a year.

 

“America loves what you guys are doing,” Bridenstine, a former naval aviator, told the astronauts. He promised to do his best “as we reach for new heights and reveal the unknown for the benefit of humankind.”

 

This is the 60th anniversary year for NASA .

 

Bridenstine is the first elected official to lead NASA, something that had bogged down his nomination last year by President Donald Trump. The Senate approved his nomination last week by a narrow vote of 50-49. Monday’s swearing-in ceremony took place at NASA headquarters in Washington.

 

Pence noted that the space agency, under Bridenstine’s direction, will work to get astronauts back to the moon and then, with help from commercial space and international partners, on to Mars.

 

“NASA will lead the way,” said Pence, who heads the newly resurrected National Space Council.

 

Charles Bolden Jr., a former space shuttle commander and major general in the Marines, was NASA’s last official administrator. The space agency was led by Acting Administrator Robert Lightfoot in the interim. Lightfoot retires from NASA at the end of this month.

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Pence Picks Kellogg to Serve as National Security Adviser

Vice President Mike Pence has chosen retired Army Lt. Gen. Keith Kellogg, a top official with the National Security Council, to serve as his national security adviser.

 

Pence selected Kellogg, a national security aide to President Donald Trump, to fill the role after his top choice, Jon Lerner, withdrew his name from consideration.

 

Lerner, an adviser to U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, pulled out of a proposed dual role after Trump learned of his planned hiring. Lerner is a longtime Republican strategist and pollster who previously worked with the Club for Growth, which aired ads critical of Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign.

 

Pence said in a statement that Kellogg “brings a wealth of experience in national security and foreign policy matters to this role and has already been an integral part of the President’s national security team.”

 

Kellogg has served as chief of staff at the National Security Council and is the latest NSC official to depart after the arrival of Trump national security adviser John Bolton. Also gone are spokesman Michael Anton, homeland security adviser Tom Bossert, and deputy national security advisers Ricky Waddell and Nadia Schadlow.

 

Kellogg served as acting national security adviser after Michael Flynn resigned in February 2017 as Trump’s first national security adviser. Flynn’s successor, H.R. McMaster, was recently replaced by Bolton.

 

Kellogg, who served in the U.S. Army for more than three decades, previously served as commander of the 82nd Airborne Division and as a top aide to Paul Bremer, who led the Coalition Provisional Authority during the reconstruction of Iraq.

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Pence Picks Kellogg to Serve as National Security Adviser

Vice President Mike Pence has chosen retired Army Lt. Gen. Keith Kellogg, a top official with the National Security Council, to serve as his national security adviser.

 

Pence selected Kellogg, a national security aide to President Donald Trump, to fill the role after his top choice, Jon Lerner, withdrew his name from consideration.

 

Lerner, an adviser to U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, pulled out of a proposed dual role after Trump learned of his planned hiring. Lerner is a longtime Republican strategist and pollster who previously worked with the Club for Growth, which aired ads critical of Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign.

 

Pence said in a statement that Kellogg “brings a wealth of experience in national security and foreign policy matters to this role and has already been an integral part of the President’s national security team.”

 

Kellogg has served as chief of staff at the National Security Council and is the latest NSC official to depart after the arrival of Trump national security adviser John Bolton. Also gone are spokesman Michael Anton, homeland security adviser Tom Bossert, and deputy national security advisers Ricky Waddell and Nadia Schadlow.

 

Kellogg served as acting national security adviser after Michael Flynn resigned in February 2017 as Trump’s first national security adviser. Flynn’s successor, H.R. McMaster, was recently replaced by Bolton.

 

Kellogg, who served in the U.S. Army for more than three decades, previously served as commander of the 82nd Airborne Division and as a top aide to Paul Bremer, who led the Coalition Provisional Authority during the reconstruction of Iraq.

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Romney’s Senate Race Must Run Through Utah Primary

Mitt Romney was forced into a Republican primary in his bid for U.S. Senate in Utah after losing a nomination battle Saturday at the state’s far-right-leaning GOP convention.

Romney remains the heavy favorite overall to replace long-serving Sen. Orrin Hatch in November and said he was ready to keep campaigning hard.

If he had won the party delegate vote at the convention, he would have bypassed a primary altogether. Instead, he was edged out by state lawmaker Mike Kennedy, who got 51 percent of the vote to Romney’s 49 percent.

GOP voters will decide between the two in a June 26 primary.

Romney secured his spot on the primary ballot by gathering 28,000 voter signatures but said Saturday that choice was partly to blame for his loss.

Romney, 71, went up against 11 other candidates at the convention, including one dressed as Abraham Lincoln, complete with vest and bow tie. Some candidates questioned Romney’s past criticism of President Donald Trump.

Romney pushed back against critics who said he’s an interloper in Utah politics by referring to his role in staging the 2002 Winter Olympics in Utah.

“Some people I’ve spoken with have said this is a David vs. Goliath race, but they’re wrong,” Romney said in his speech. “I’m not Goliath. Washington, D.C., is Goliath.”

Kennedy, a doctor and lawyer, framed himself as an underdog taking on the “Romney machine.” At one point, he pitched in to sweep up tiny paper American flags that had been shot from a confetti cannon hours before.

Delegate Matt Murdoch, 28, said he voted for Kennedy because he’s a family doctor serving many of his neighbors in Alpine, south of Salt Lake City.

Stay-at-home mother Michelle Cluff said she liked Romney’s experience and believes he is ready to get to work as a senator.

Romney was governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007. While in office he signed legislation that greatly expanded access to health care through state-level subsidies and individual mandates to purchase insurance, much like Obamacare.

Romney asked for delegates’ votes after spending two months on the campaign trail visiting dairy farms, taking selfies with college students and making stump speeches in small towns.

After his failed 2012 presidential campaign, he moved to Utah, where he gained popularity after running as the first Mormon presidential nominee of a major political party.

He’s worked to keep the focus on state issues rather than his history of well-documented feuds with Trump.

The two men have shown signs of making peace, and Romney has accepted Trump’s endorsement for Senate. But Romney said Saturday he hasn’t decided whether he’ll endorse the president’s 2020 re-election bid.

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Romney’s Senate Race Must Run Through Utah Primary

Mitt Romney was forced into a Republican primary in his bid for U.S. Senate in Utah after losing a nomination battle Saturday at the state’s far-right-leaning GOP convention.

Romney remains the heavy favorite overall to replace long-serving Sen. Orrin Hatch in November and said he was ready to keep campaigning hard.

If he had won the party delegate vote at the convention, he would have bypassed a primary altogether. Instead, he was edged out by state lawmaker Mike Kennedy, who got 51 percent of the vote to Romney’s 49 percent.

GOP voters will decide between the two in a June 26 primary.

Romney secured his spot on the primary ballot by gathering 28,000 voter signatures but said Saturday that choice was partly to blame for his loss.

Romney, 71, went up against 11 other candidates at the convention, including one dressed as Abraham Lincoln, complete with vest and bow tie. Some candidates questioned Romney’s past criticism of President Donald Trump.

Romney pushed back against critics who said he’s an interloper in Utah politics by referring to his role in staging the 2002 Winter Olympics in Utah.

“Some people I’ve spoken with have said this is a David vs. Goliath race, but they’re wrong,” Romney said in his speech. “I’m not Goliath. Washington, D.C., is Goliath.”

Kennedy, a doctor and lawyer, framed himself as an underdog taking on the “Romney machine.” At one point, he pitched in to sweep up tiny paper American flags that had been shot from a confetti cannon hours before.

Delegate Matt Murdoch, 28, said he voted for Kennedy because he’s a family doctor serving many of his neighbors in Alpine, south of Salt Lake City.

Stay-at-home mother Michelle Cluff said she liked Romney’s experience and believes he is ready to get to work as a senator.

Romney was governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007. While in office he signed legislation that greatly expanded access to health care through state-level subsidies and individual mandates to purchase insurance, much like Obamacare.

Romney asked for delegates’ votes after spending two months on the campaign trail visiting dairy farms, taking selfies with college students and making stump speeches in small towns.

After his failed 2012 presidential campaign, he moved to Utah, where he gained popularity after running as the first Mormon presidential nominee of a major political party.

He’s worked to keep the focus on state issues rather than his history of well-documented feuds with Trump.

The two men have shown signs of making peace, and Romney has accepted Trump’s endorsement for Senate. But Romney said Saturday he hasn’t decided whether he’ll endorse the president’s 2020 re-election bid.

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Trump Says He Doesn’t Think Personal Lawyer Will ‘Flip’

President Donald Trump said Saturday that he didn’t expect Michael Cohen, his longtime personal lawyer and fixer, to “flip” as the government investigates Cohen’s business dealings.

Trump, in a series of tweets fired off from Florida on the morning of former first lady Barbara Bush’s funeral, accused The New York Times and one of its reporters of “going out of their way to destroy Michael Cohen and his relationship with me in the hope that he will ‘flip’ ” — a term that can mean cooperating with the government in exchange for leniency.

“Most people will flip if the Government lets them out of trouble,” even if “it means lying or making up stories,” Trump said, before adding: “Sorry, I don’t see Michael doing that despite the horrible Witch Hunt and the dishonest media!”

The FBI raided Cohen’s home, office and hotel room this month, looking for evidence of fraud amid a criminal investigation. That included records related to payments Cohen made in 2016 to adult film star Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal, both of whom allege having had sexual encounters with Trump, people familiar with the raid have told The Associated Press.

Prosecutors have said they’re investigating Cohen’s personal business dealings but haven’t said what crime they believe he may have committed. Cohen’s lawyers have called the raid an assault on attorney-client privilege, and Trump has said it was “an attack on our country.”

In the tweets, sent shortly after he arrived at one of his Florida golf courses, Trump accused the newspaper of using “non-existent ‘sources’ ” in a Friday story about the relationship between Trump and Cohen, who has said he would “take a bullet” for his boss. The story quoted several people on the record.

Trump also lashed out personally at one of the story’s writers, calling reporter Maggie Haberman “third rate” and claiming he has “nothing to do with” her. Trump later deleted and reposted the tweets, correcting the spelling of Haberman’s name.

Haberman is widely seen as one of the most diligent reporters covering the president and is known to speak with him often. The Times responded on Twitter, saying it stood by the story and praising Haberman, who was part of the team that just won a Pulitzer Prize for its reporting on Trump.

The tweets came as the rest of the country was preparing for the funeral of Mrs. Bush. The president chose not to go to the Houston service, but first lady Melania Trump attended. Trump tweeted that he would watch from Florida.

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Trump Says He Doesn’t Think Personal Lawyer Will ‘Flip’

President Donald Trump said Saturday that he didn’t expect Michael Cohen, his longtime personal lawyer and fixer, to “flip” as the government investigates Cohen’s business dealings.

Trump, in a series of tweets fired off from Florida on the morning of former first lady Barbara Bush’s funeral, accused The New York Times and one of its reporters of “going out of their way to destroy Michael Cohen and his relationship with me in the hope that he will ‘flip’ ” — a term that can mean cooperating with the government in exchange for leniency.

“Most people will flip if the Government lets them out of trouble,” even if “it means lying or making up stories,” Trump said, before adding: “Sorry, I don’t see Michael doing that despite the horrible Witch Hunt and the dishonest media!”

The FBI raided Cohen’s home, office and hotel room this month, looking for evidence of fraud amid a criminal investigation. That included records related to payments Cohen made in 2016 to adult film star Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal, both of whom allege having had sexual encounters with Trump, people familiar with the raid have told The Associated Press.

Prosecutors have said they’re investigating Cohen’s personal business dealings but haven’t said what crime they believe he may have committed. Cohen’s lawyers have called the raid an assault on attorney-client privilege, and Trump has said it was “an attack on our country.”

In the tweets, sent shortly after he arrived at one of his Florida golf courses, Trump accused the newspaper of using “non-existent ‘sources’ ” in a Friday story about the relationship between Trump and Cohen, who has said he would “take a bullet” for his boss. The story quoted several people on the record.

Trump also lashed out personally at one of the story’s writers, calling reporter Maggie Haberman “third rate” and claiming he has “nothing to do with” her. Trump later deleted and reposted the tweets, correcting the spelling of Haberman’s name.

Haberman is widely seen as one of the most diligent reporters covering the president and is known to speak with him often. The Times responded on Twitter, saying it stood by the story and praising Haberman, who was part of the team that just won a Pulitzer Prize for its reporting on Trump.

The tweets came as the rest of the country was preparing for the funeral of Mrs. Bush. The president chose not to go to the Houston service, but first lady Melania Trump attended. Trump tweeted that he would watch from Florida.

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