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GOP congresswoman demands Columbia University 'restore order and safety' amid anti-Israel protests

Rep. Virginia Foxx, chair of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, sent a letter to Columbia University leaders demanding they take action against the anti-Israel protests on campus that have made Jewish students feel unsafe.

Foxx's letter on Sunday was addressed to Columbia President Minouche Shafik and Columbia Trustees Co-Chairs David Greenwald and Claire Shipman.

"I am gravely concerned by the ongoing chaos at Columbia University caused by the radical, unlawful Gaza Solidarity Encampment, which has now entered its fifth day," Foxx, R-N.C., wrote. "The encampment and related activities have created a severe and pervasive hostile environment for Jewish students at Columbia. A Jewish chaplain at the University has recommended Jewish students depart campus due to the University’s inability to guarantee their safety. Multiple Jewish students have already sought shelter off-campus."

"Columbia's continued failure to restore order and safety promptly to campus constitutes a major breach of the University’s Title VI obligations, upon which federal financial assistance is contingent, and which must immediately be rectified," she continued. "If you do not rectify this danger, then the Committee will not hesitate in holding you accountable."

ANTI-ISRAEL AGITATORS OCCUPY COLUMBIA CAMPUS AS UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT FACES GRILLING FROM CONGRESS

Anti-Israel agitators occupied Columbia's south lawn in New York City for hours on Wednesday as Shafik testified before Congress about antisemitism on the university's campus.

An encampment with tents was set up on the main lawn of campus and the protests continued into the night for several days.

Protests at the university have called for an intifada and the death of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. One Jewish Columbia University student was told to "kill yourself" and was repeatedly kicked in the stomach.

Foxx wrote: "The encampment and related activities have resulted in widespread antisemitic harassment and intimidation, assaults, frequent celebration of terrorism, and major disruptions of Columbia’s learning environment. … The Committee is aware of multiple Jewish students seeking shelter off-campus due to their well-founded fears regarding their physical safety and continuing to be subjected to what is clearly a hostile environment."

On Thursday, the New York City Police Department arrested 108 people who refused to leave the encampment, each of whom was issued a summons for trespassing. The university also began handing out suspension notices to the students who were arrested.

"This situation is unacceptable, and it is imperative that Columbia’s leaders restore order and safety without further delay, in line with their commitments before the Committee at its April 17 hearing," Foxx said, referring to comments made by Shafik, Greenwald and Shipman stressing the importance of student safety.

WHITE HOUSE CONDEMNS 'BLATANTLY ANTISEMITIC' PROTESTS AS AGITATORS ENGULF COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY

"Columbia is failing to deliver on these commitments, as Jewish students are being harassed, assaulted, threatened, and intimidated to the point where they are departing campus for safer environments," she added.

The congresswoman said students, faculty, and staff are "responsible for this mayhem," including members of the campus groups Students for Justice in Palestine, Jewish Voice for Peace, Columbia University Apartheid Divest and Faculty and Staff for Justice in Palestine. She said these groups have "repeatedly and flagrantly" violated multiple university rules and even federal law in some cases.

"The University must decisively hold them accountable in a manner commensurate with the severity of their offenses, including expulsion and termination of employment," Foxx concluded.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul and the White House have criticized the protests at Columbia as antisemitic and dangerous.

"The First Amendment protects the right to protest, but students also have a right to learn in an environment free from harassment or violence," Hochul said. "At Columbia or on any campus, threatening Jewish students with violence or glorifying the terror of October 7 is antisemitism."

On Monday, students are planning a walk out to demand amnesty for student and faculty protesters as well as the university's divestment from "Israeli apartheid."

Shafik's office said in a statement to Fox News Digital that students have a right to protest, but they may not harass and intimidate other students.

"As President Shafik has said repeatedly, the safety of our community is our number one priority," the statement said. "Columbia students have the right to protest, but they are not allowed to disrupt campus life or harass and intimidate fellow students and members of our community. We are acting on concerns we are hearing from our Jewish students and are providing additional support and resources to ensure that our community remains safe."

Fox News' Greg Wehner contributed to this report.

2024/04/22 05:23

House GOP chairman accuses key government agency of acting as Biden 'campaign arm'

FIRST ON FOX: The top Republican on the House Small Business Committee is accusing the Biden administration of using a key government agency as its "campaign arm" in a critical swing state ahead of the 2024 election.

"Earlier this month, my colleagues and I sent a letter to the SBA inquiring into their Memorandum of Understanding with the Michigan Department of State. It appears that the SBA is diverting its resources away from assisting Main Street so it can register Democrat voters," Chairman Roger Williams, R-Texas, told Fox News Digital.

"Federal agencies should not act as campaign arms for their Administrations, period. Americans have a right to know the extent of the SBA’s involvement, and based on further investigation, it appears even more concerning. I look forward to hearing from Administrator Guzman as to why her agency is engaging in election efforts on the taxpayer’s dime."

BIDEN ADMIN ACCUSED OF USING TAXPAYER FUNDS TO HELP HIS OWN CAMPAIGN WITH STUDENT VOTER REGISTRATION SCHEME

It comes as President Biden’s re-election campaign eyes Michigan as a must-win state in the 2024 race. Biden beat former President Trump by less than 3% there in 2020.

Williams’ committee is investigating the Small Business Administration’s collaboration with the Michigan Department of State on a program "to promote civic engagement and voter registration in Michigan," according to a press release announcing the partnership.

The press release said the Michigan Department of State would "create a unique URL for the SBA to use to drive online visitors to register to vote," and that the SBA’s Michigan field office would allow state government officials to facilitate in-person voter registration at the federal agency’s business outreach events. It is part of an overall effort by the Biden administration to expand access to voter registration, launched by a 2021 executive order.

BEWARE OF WORK-STUDY PROGRAMS DISGUISED AS POLITICAL ACTIVITIES: GOP ATTORNEYS GENERAL LETTER TO DOE

An investigation by the House Small Business Committee found that 22 out of 25 of such outreach events have taken place in counties with the highest population of Democratic National Committee (DNC) target demographics.

Meanwhile, 11 of 15 Michigan counties that showed the largest voter registration increase over the last year have ranked highest in population of young voters and Black voters, according to the committee – two of the left’s most-sought voting blocs.

Williams sent a letter last week to SBA Administrator Isabel Guzman demanding more information on whether her federal office is helping expand Biden’s voter base.

POLL REVEALS BATTLEGROUND STATE VOTERS PREFER TRUMP OVER BIDEN IN HEATED 2024 CONTEST

"The Committee wrote to you on April 4, 2024, requesting further information about your involvement in voter registration in Michigan. You failed to provide a briefing, narrative response, or any documents by the deadline. The Committee is incredibly concerned that the Small Business Administration (SBA) improperly involved the federal government in America’s electoral processes," Williams wrote.

Fox News Digital reached out to the Biden campaign and the SBA for comment.

2024/04/22 04:00

Trump trial: Opening arguments to begin as Trump flouts gag order and attorney previews defense

Opening arguments in former President Trump’s historic and unprecedented criminal trial are set to begin Monday morning, and the judge is also expected to rule on several motions that could make the trial even more difficult for the former president.

The full jury of 12, plus six alternate jurors, were selected and sworn in on Friday after four days of jury selection. 

Judge Juan Merchan, who is presiding over the trial, instructed jurors on Friday not to discuss or to research anything relating to the former president’s case over the weekend or while serving on the panel. 

TRUMP WARNS THAT IF HE LOSES PRESIDENTIAL IMMUNITY, SO WILL 'CROOKED' JOE BIDEN

Merchan said opening arguments will be delivered by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s team and Trump defense attorneys. 

Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, has been charged by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg with 34 counts of falsifying business records in the first degree. The charges are related to alleged hush money payments made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 presidential election. 

Trump has pleaded not guilty to all counts. He has blasted the trial as pure politics, a "political persecution" and maintains his innocence. The former president, and the first ever to be a defendant in a criminal trial, vowed to "tell the truth" if he takes the stand. 

TRUMP HUSH MONEY TRIAL: MEET THE JURORS WHO WILL HEAR BRAGG'S CASE AGAINST THE 2024 PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE

Trump attorney Will Scharf told Fox News Channel on Sunday that the case should never have been brought, and that the facts are on his client's side.

"While the prosecution and the media are hell-bent on sensationalizing this case, we're focusing on the facts because the facts show that President Trump did absolutely nothing wrong," Scharf said. "This is a business records case, those business records accurately reflected payments to one of President Trump's lawyers as legal retainer fees. Additionally, those records weren't actually entered by President Trump. He was busy running the country from the White House while all this was happening in Trump Tower in New York."

The former president is subject to a gag order, which Merchan imposed upon him last month before the trial began. Merchan ordered that Trump cannot make or direct others to make public statements about witnesses concerning their potential participation or about counsel in the case – other than Bragg – or about court staff, DA staff or family members of staff.

Merchan also ordered that Trump cannot make or direct others to make public statements about any prospective juror or chosen juror. But on Saturday, he let loose with an all-caps rant on his social media platform.

"THIS SCAM "RUSHED" TRIAL TAKING PLACE IN A 95% DEMOCRAT AREA IS A PLANNED AND COORDINATED WITCH HUNT THAT COULD HAVE BEEN BROUGHT 8 YEARS AGO, BUT EVERYBODY PASSED," Trump wrote on Truth Social. "INSTEAD THEY WAITED AND BROUGHT IT RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF MY PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN AGAINST THE WORST AND MOST INCOMPETENT PRESIDENT EVER, CROOKED JOE BIDEN. IT IS BEING PRESIDED OVER BY PERHAPS THE MOST CONFLICTED JUDGE IN JUDICIAL HISTORY, WHO MUST BE REMOVED FROM THIS HOAX IMMEDIATELY. I DID NOTHING WRONG!"

Bragg argued in the first week of the trial that Trump has violated his gag order more than seven times, and wants him to pay a $1,000 fine. Bragg, in his motion, urged the judge to warn the former president that another violation could be punishable by up to 30 days' incarceration. 

Trump and his defense attorneys have argued that the former president and presumptive Republican presidential nominee should not be bound by the gag order, and said it violates his First Amendment rights, as well as the First Amendment rights of his supporters. 

The judge is expected to rule on whether Trump actually violated the order by early next week. 

Also Monday, Merchan said he would make a decision on what evidence Bragg's team can use in their effort to "discredit" the former president should he testify in his own defense. 

TRUMP SAYS BIDEN 'SHOULD BE IN JAIL' AND 'ON TRIAL,' WHILE BLASTING NY CASE: 'THE WHOLE WORLD IS WATCHING'

Bragg, in a filing last week, said he intends to use Trump’s alleged prior "misconduct and criminal acts" to discredit him.

But Trump has never been convicted of a crime.

Bragg's office said it intends to refer to information from New York Attorney General Letitia James’ case against the former president and the determination from New York Judge Arthur Engoron after the months-long non-jury civil fraud trial against Trump and his family.

Engoron ruled Trump was liable for fraud and "falsifying business records," "issuing false financial statements," "conspiracy to falsify false financial statements," "insurance fraud" and "conspiracy to commit insurance fraud." 

Trump was required to post a slashed judgment bond of $175 million as he appeals the ruling.

BRAGG SAYS HE WILL TRY TO 'DISCREDIT' TRUMP IF HE TESTIFIES IN HIS DEFENSE DURING CRIMINAL TRIAL

That trial took place without a jury. Trump’s defense attorneys Friday objected to any cross-examination of the former president related to James’ case and Engoron’s ruling due to the appellate division’s decision to put the judgment on pause during appeal.

But prosecutor Matthew Colangelo said the findings from Engoron showed "persistent and repeated fraud and illegality." While the appellate division did pause the judgment, Colangelo said it says nothing about the merits of the case. 

Meanwhile, Bragg's office also intends to use information from E. Jean Carroll's defamation case against Trump, and more. 

Trump defense attorneys on Friday said each piece of "evidence" Bragg's team hopes to use are "just distractions." 

Trump has said he will testify in his defense at the trial, telling reporters last week: "I tell the truth." 

Merchan said he will reserve his decision on what information prosecutors can cross-examine the president with until Monday morning. 

2024/04/22 04:00

Supreme Court prepares to debate Trump immunity claim in election interference case

In what may be the most closely watched case this term at the Supreme Court – involving the highest-profile appellant – former President Donald Trump has offered a sweeping argument for why he should not face trial for alleged election interference.

The high court will hold arguments Thursday morning in what could determine the former president's personal and political future. As the presumptive GOP nominee to retake the White House, Trump is betting that his constitutional assertions will lead to a legal reprieve from the court's 6-3 conservative majority – with three of its members appointed to the bench by the defendant himself.  

The official question the justices will consider: Whether, and if so, to what extent does a former president enjoy presidential immunity from criminal prosecution for conduct alleged to involve official acts during his tenure in office?

This is new territory for the Supreme Court and the nation. No current or former president has ever been criminally indicted.

The stakes could not be higher – both for the immediate election prospects, and the long-term effect on the presidency itself and the rule of law. But it will be the second time this term the high court will hear a case directly involving the former president. 

TRUMP HUSH MONEY TRIAL ENTERS DAY 2

On March 4, the justices unanimously ruled that Trump could remain on the Colorado primary ballot over claims he committed insurrection in the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol riots.

The decision to intervene at this stage in the immunity dispute is a mixed bag for both Trump and the Special Counsel. The defendant wanted to delay the process longer – ideally past the November election – and Jack Smith wanted the high court appeal dismissed immediately so any trial could get back on track quickly. 

A federal appeals court had unanimously ruled against Trump on the immunity question.

"For the purpose of this criminal case, former President Trump has become citizen Trump, with all of the defenses of any other criminal defendant," the three-judge panel wrote. "But any executive immunity that may have protected him while he served as President no longer protects him against this prosecution." 

Smith has charged the former president with conspiracy to defraud the U.S.; conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding; obstruction of and attempt to obstruct an official proceeding; and conspiracy against rights. 

Those charges stemmed from Smith's investigation into Trump's alleged plotting to overturn the 2020 election result, including participation in a scheme to disrupt the electoral vote count leading to the subsequent Jan. 6, 2021, U.S. Capitol riot.

Trump pleaded not guilty to all charges in August.

In its brief on the merits submitted this month, the Special Counsel told the high court that "presidents are not above the law."

"The Framers never endorsed criminal immunity for a former President, and all Presidents from the Founding to the modern era have known that after leaving office they faced potential criminal liability for official acts," said the government. 

But Trump's legal team told the high court, "A denial of criminal immunity would incapacitate every future President with de facto blackmail and extortion while in office, and condemn him to years of post-office trauma at the hands of political opponents."

His lawyers added: "The threat of future prosecution and imprisonment would become a political cudgel to influence the most sensitive and controversial Presidential decisions, taking away the strength, authority, and decisiveness of the Presidency."

In a series of supporting briefs, 19 GOP-controlled states and more than two dozen Republican members of Congress are among those backing Trump's legal positions.

Some of the issues the court will have to consider:

Can a former president ever be prosecuted for "official acts," or does he enjoy "absolute immunity?"

By including the words "whether and to what extent" in its official question framing the case, the Supreme Court – in the eyes of many legal scholars – may be prepared to limit or narrow "absolute immunity," at least in this case.

But court precedent may give Trump some protection – that former presidents should not face civil liability "predicated on his official acts" (Fitzgerald v. Nixon, 1982). Trump, of course, is facing criminal charges brought by the government. The question remains: Will the court now extend any implied civil protection to a criminal prosecution? 

What constitutes an official act of a president? Will the court distinguish between Trump's alleged election interference as clearly acting in his executive capacity, or was he acting in a purely political or personal capacity as an incumbent candidate? 

A federal appeals court that rejected Trump's arguments in a separate civil lawsuit alleging that he incited the violent Capitol mob with his "Stop the Steal" rally remarks on Jan. 6, 2021 concluded that "his campaign to win re-election is not an official presidential act." Trump is making the same immunity claims in those pending lawsuits.

Justice Clarence Thomas, in a separate 2020 case involving Trump financial records sought by New York prosecutors, wrote, "This Court has recognized absolute immunity for the President from 'damages liability predicated on his official acts,' But we have rejected absolute immunity from damages actions for a President's nonofficial conduct." 

Thomas cited the 1997 Clinton v. Jones case, which determined that a sitting president did not have immunity from civil suits over his conduct prior to taking office and unrelated to his office. Again, the current dispute involves a criminal prosecution, and the justices may weigh whether that deserves greater deference to the constitutional claims from both sides.

What acts are within the outer rim of a president's constitutional duties?  

The lower federal courts deciding the matter pointedly avoided addressing that issue, but the high court now has full discretion to take it up. Questions or hypotheticals from the bench may offer hints about how broadly the justices may want to explore the orbit of presidential authority, when weighing political or "discretionary" acts vs. duty-bound or "ministerial" acts.

During January oral arguments before the DC-based federal appeals court, Trump's lawyer, John Sauer, suggested that if a president were to order Seal Team Six military commandos to assassinate a political rival, he could then be criminally prosecuted only if first found guilty by Congress through the impeachment process. 

Given the stakes, the Supreme Court may compromise here and issue a mixed ruling: rejecting Trump's broad immunity claims while preserving certain vital executive functions, like the national security role of commander-in-chief. The big unknown is what side Trump's election-related conduct would fall, in the eyes of the nine justices.  

Do federal courts have any jurisdiction to consider a president's official discretionary decisions?  

On this separation-of-powers question, Smith's team and others have cited the 1952 Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v. Sawyer case that limited a president's power to seize private property – even in a wartime emergency – absent any express congressional authorization. That landmark ruling curbing executive power also affirmed the judiciary's binding role to review a president's actions in office.

Will the Supreme Court ultimately decide not to decide, and throw the competing issues back to the lower courts for further review?

The justices may get buyer's remorse and conclude that weighty questions were not fully considered at the intermediate appellate or trial court level. That could significantly delay any trial.

Or they may let the trial play out first, and give both sides a chance to make their claims before a jury. Depending on the verdict, the Supreme Court would then likely revisit the immunity questions. 

Despite Trump's urging, the court pointedly chose not to address another lingering issue: whether the criminal prosecution violates the Fifth Amendment's ban on "double jeopardy," since he was acquitted by the Senate in February 2021 for election subversion, following his second impeachment.       

Trump faces criminal prosecution in three other jurisdictions: He faces a federal case over his alleged mishandling of classified documents while in office; a Georgia case over alleged election interference in that state's 2020 voting procedures; and a New York fraud case involving alleged hush money payments to an adult film star in 2016.

Jury selection in the New York case began on April 15.

But the start of the election interference trial in Washington remains in doubt. Depending on how the court rules, proceedings might not get underway until later this summer, in early fall or perhaps much later.

EXCUSED JUROR REVEALS SELECTION PROCESS FOR TRUMP'S HUSH MONEY TRIAL: 'NOT A FAN'

There is one other factor to consider: Trump could win re-election and then, upon taking office, order his attorney general to dismiss the Special Counsel and all his cases. Neither side's legal team has yet to publicly speculate on that scenario. 

So, Jack Smith's case is frozen for now.

And while this appeal would normally be decided in late June at the end of the Court's term, it is being expedited – so a ruling could come sooner.  

If the Supreme Court rules in the government's favor, the trial court will "un-pause" – meaning all the discovery and pre-trial machinations that have been on hold would resume.  

Trump's team would likely argue to trial Judge Tanya Chutkan that they need several months at least from that point to actually be ready for a jury trial.  

Chutkan said in December that she does not have jurisdiction over the matter while it is pending before the Supreme Court, and she put a pause on the case against him until the justices decide the matter on the merits.

A sweeping constitutional victory for the former president would almost certainly mean that his election interference prosecution collapses, and could implicate his other pending criminal and civil cases. 

But for now, Trump may have achieved a short-term win, even if he eventually loses before the Supreme Court – an indefinite delay in any trial that may carry over well past Election Day on Nov. 5.   

2024/04/22 04:00

Satanic Temple co-founder challenges Florida Gov DeSantis to debate on religious freedoms

The Satanic Temple’s (TST) co-founder challenged Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to a debate on religious freedom after the governor singled out satanists by saying they were not allowed to participate in a new chaplain program signed into law last week.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill into law that allows school districts to adopt volunteer school chaplain services.

Under the bill, each school in the state has the option to adopt a policy allowing volunteer school chaplains to provide support services and programs for students. The bill also requires principals of schools with volunteer school chaplains to inform all parents of the services being provided, while also requiring written parental consent before students participate or receive the services.

On Thursday, DeSantis stressed the program was "totally voluntary for a parent or a student to participate."

FLORIDA BILLS WOULD ALLOW SATANIC PRIESTS TO SERVE AS VOLUNTEER CHAPLAINS IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS

He also made clear that members of TST would not be able to serve as public school chaplains.

"Some have said that if you do a school chaplain program, that, somehow, you're going to have satanists running around in all our schools. We're not playing those games in Florida," DeSantis assured the people in the crowd. "That is not a religion. That is not qualified to be able to participate in this. So, we're going to be using common sense when it comes to this. You don't have to worry about it."

As the bill moved through the state legislative process, TST threatened to sue the state if any of its members were banned from serving as chaplains in the program.

SATANIC TEMPLE LEADER CHALLENGES ‘PATHETIC LITTLE COWARD’ DESANTIS TO DEBATE OVER GROUP'S TAX-EXEMPT STATUS

TST co-founder, Lucien Greaves told Fox News Digital the governor has made multiple comments about the organization without any knowledge of who they are or what they believe.

"This should be of significant concern to anybody, regardless of their own religious views," Greaves said. "Worse, in signing HB 931 into law, the governor simply announced, from the podium at a press conference, that Satanists were to be considered unqualified for the school chaplaincy program while citing no legal theory to support his view."

The co-founder of TST said the legislation indicates DeSantis is unaware of how the law works and unaware that the bill he signed into law "does in fact allow Satanic chaplains in schools," revealing the governor is unaware of the limits of his authority.

DESANTIS PLEDGES SUPPORT FOR DEVIL STATUE DECAPITATOR, SAYS GOVT SHOULD NOT RECOGNIZE SATANISM AS ‘RELIGION’

After making the comments, Greaves posted on X that the IRS recognizes TST as a tax-exempt church.

"If FL’s Republican administration deliberately excludes the group from the state’s new school chaplain program, that would constitute the kind of discrimination that would likely fail in court," he posted.

The executive director of operations at TST, Rachel Chambliss, also sent an invitation to DeSantis to participate in a public debate with Greaves, regarding their status as a federally recognized religious organization.

"In light of Governor DeSantis’ recent remarks concerning our involvement in Florida’s new School Chaplain program, we find ourselves in respectful disagreement," Chambliss wrote. "We believe that a public debate would provide an excellent platform to thoroughly discuss the principles of religious freedom in America."

DeSantis’ office did not respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment on the matter.

Still, Greaves called the governor’s actions "erroneous."

"If I am correct, and DeSantis is merely engaging in empty grandstanding with a complete disregard for the intelligence of the people of Florida, he will surely ignore this challenge," Greaves added.

2024/04/21 21:59

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Obama screws Israel again!

White House works to ease Iran proposal in Congress
The Obama administration fears tough U.S. sanctions against companies doing business in Iran would anger foreign allies.
By Paul Richter, Los Angeles Times

June 11, 2010

Reporting from Washington


The Obama administration, which labored for months to impose tough new United Nations sanctions against Iran, now is pushing in the opposite direction against Congress as it crafts U.S. sanctions that the White House fears may go too far.

Administration officials have begun negotiations with congressional leaders, who are working on versions of House and Senate bills that would punish companies that sell refined petroleum products to Iran or help the country's oil industry.

Unlike the U.N. measures, congressional action would pertain only to U.S. policies and agencies and would not be binding on other countries. Other countries and groups of nations also are considering adopting measures to augment the U.N. action.

The sanctions are aimed at forcing Iran to giving up its nuclear program, which Western nations fear is geared toward developing nuclear weapons. Iran insists it is only interested in peaceful energy projects.

U.S. sanctions have strong support in Congress, and the administration backs them in principle as a way to strengthen the mild strictures adopted on Wednesday by the U.N. Security Council.

But the administration fears that the legislation also could damage relations with Europe, Russia and China, all of whom cooperated with U.S. efforts on the U.N. sanctions.

To avoid that possibility, the administration wants authority to waive U.S. punishment against companies from countries that have cooperated on Iran.

Many lawmakers are wary. Some say the Obama administration, like its predecessors, has been lax in enforcing existing Iran sanctions out of concern for good relations with other world powers.

"The administration doesn't carry out the laws that are on the books, and they want the new law to be as weak and loophole-ridden as possible," said Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Sherman Oaks), who has been pushing for years for such legislation.

Republicans have been ratcheting up their demands for Congress to hang tough, arguing that the U.N. resolution fell short of what was needed.

Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida, the senior Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, called the U.N. sanctions a "goose egg" and demanded that Congress impose "crippling sanctions against Iran."

Russia already has warned that penalizing Russian companies "could lead to retaliatory measures."

Russia said Thursday that it intends to go ahead with sales to Iran of a highly sophisticated surface-to-air missile that has been a source of U.S. concern.

There are serious issues with Europe, as well. Catherine Ashton, the European Union foreign policy chief, reminded Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton in a recent letter that U.S. officials agreed in 1998 not to hit European companies with sanctions for doing business with Iran.

The pending legislation presents other difficulties for the administration. Since a petroleum cutoff would strike broadly at the Iranian population, such sanctions would be seen as undermining the Obama administration's argument that it supports only those sanctions that focus narrowly on the Iranian leadership, said Peter Crail of the Arms Control Assn., a Washington-based advocacy group.

Meanwhile, U.S. business groups have been complaining that the legislation could punish them by barring U.S. firms from doing business with any foreign firms that have commercial ties to Iran.

Many oil and trading companies already have halted sales to Iran because of the looming threat of sanctions. But some that still could be penalized are Shell, Total and China Oil, said Mark Dubowitz of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a policy institute based in Washington.

BP, which is facing public relations problems because of the gulf oil spill in April, stopped selling gasoline to Iran in 2008, he said.

paul.richter@latimes.com

Times staff writer Sergei L. Loiko in Moscow contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2010, The Los Angeles Times
2010/06/11 09:06

YouTube of Jewish leader putting Obama in his place!

2010/06/07 13:24

June 6, 2PM - Floridians of all races and political persuasions rally to protest Obama's abandonment of Israel!

FAIR PLAY FOR ISRAEL RALLY!

MIAMI

SUNDAY, JUNE 6 ; 2PM

TORCH OF FRIENDSHIPBISCAYNE BLVD (NEAR THE AA ARENA)


We the good citizens of the great State of Florida, having found disfavor in the abandonment of the State of Israel, and the mistreatment of her prime minister at the hands of our federal administration, do hereby and hereunto declare the following:

Whereas, Israel has proven itself to be the United States’ most steadfast and consistent ally in the world, and thus worthy of our respect, loyalty and admiration; and

Whereas Israel has partnered with the United States in making a myriad of advances in technology, science and medicine benefiting not only both countries, but the world at large; and

Whereas Israel has joined the United States in providing life-saving emergency aid to grief-stricken peoples all over the world; and

Whereas Israel has constantly been and continues to be beset by hostile Arab and Muslim enemies, some of whom deny the Holocaust, and all of whom prepare for another one; and

Whereas Israel has always possessed the technical means to annihilate all its enemies but has never even thought to do so; and

Whereas, Israel stands at the front-line of the radical Muslim onslaught dedicated to the elimination of Western Civilization, should ever it acquire the technical means to do so; and

Whereas Jerusalem is the eternal capital of the Israelite race and Jewish State, and Judaea and Samaria the historic bedrock of Jewish civilization; and

Whereas Israel has repeatedly outstretched her hand to her Arab neighbors in peace only to be met with the fist of war:

We the people demand and insist that the Obama administration CEASE AND DESIST from pressuring Israel to give up more land, rights and privileges to its enemies while its enemies, chiefly Iran, plan her destruction.

For all these reasons, and it having been that this great nation of ours was founded on the principles of truth, justice, fairness and reciprocity, We the People STAND UP for the State of Israel and demand that the Obama administration do the same!
2010/05/24 11:34

A poignant letter from a business leader:

By Lou Pritchett, Procter & Gamble

A LETTER FROM A PROCTER AND GAMBLE EXECUTIVE TO THE PRESIDENT

Lou Pritchett is one of corporate America 's true living legends- an acclaimed author, dynamic teacher and one of the world's highest rated speakers. Successful corporate executives everywhere recognize him as the foremost leader in change management.. Lou changed the way America does business by creating an audacious concept that came to be known as "partnering." Pritchett rose from soap salesman to Vice-President, Sales and Customer Development for Procter and Gamble and over the course of 36 years, made corporate history.


AN OPEN LETTER TO PRESIDENT OBAMA
Dear President Obama:
You are the thirteenth President under whom I have lived and unlike any of the others, you truly scare me.
You scare me because after months of exposure, I know nothing about you.
You scare me because I do not know how you paid for your expensive Ivy League education and your upscale lifestyle and housing with no visible signs of support.
You scare me because you did not spend the formative years of youth growing up in America and culturally you are not an American.
You scare me because you have never run a company or met a payroll.
You scare me because you have never had military experience, thus don't understand it at its core.
You scare me because you lack humility and 'class', always blaming others.
You scare me because for over half your life you have aligned yourself with radical extremists who hate America and you refuse to publicly denounce these radicals who wish to see America fail..
You scare me because you are a cheerleader for the 'blame America ' crowd and deliver this message abroad.
You scare me because you want to change America to a European style country where the government sector dominates instead of the private sector.
You scare me because you want to replace our health car system with a government controlled one.
You scare me because you prefer 'wind mills' to responsibly capitalizing on our own vast oil, coal and shale reserves.
You scare me because you want to kill the American capitalist goose that lays the golden egg which provides the highest standard of living in the world.
You scare me because you have begun to use 'extortion' tactics against certain banks and corporations.
You scare me because your own political party shrinks from challenging you on your wild and irresponsible spending proposals.
You scare me because you will not openly listen to or even consider opposing points of view from intelligent people.
You scare me because you falsely believe that you are both omnipotent an omniscient.
You scare me because the media gives you a free pass on everything you do.
You scare me because you demonize and want to silence the Limbaugh's, Hannitys, O'Reillys and Becks who offer opposing, conservative points of view.
You scare me because you prefer controlling over governing.
Finally, you scare me because if you serve a second term I will probably not feel safe in writing a similar letter in 8 years.

Lou Pritchett
2010/05/24 11:12

OBAMA DOESN'T WANT YOU TO SEE THIS

2010/05/21 18:18

Obama's sinister plot to destroy Israel? You decide:

Obama's Plan to Destroy Israel
May 10
by Daniel Greenfield(Israelnationalnews.com)

If there's one thing that the Carter Administration can be given credit for, it's creating the new wave of Islamist terrorism, both Sunni, operating out of Afghanistan, and Shiite, operating out of Iran. The Carter Administration cracked down on Israel and put its "faith" in Muslim terrorists, who then went on to wage war on America, even while Carter was in office. 28 years after Carter was removed from office, we're in reruns again with the Obama Administration, which is not only following the Carter line, but whose plans greatly exceed it.28 years ago, Wahhabi Sunni and Shiite terrorists were generally an afterthought when compared to the standardIran is to be our new best friend under this arrangement, Israel is to be our new best enemy. USSR backed Marxist terrorist groups, such as the PLO.Today, thanks in part to the Carter Administration, they control several countries and have designs on several more. From Pakistan to Afghanistan, from Gaza to Lebanon, from the Middle East to Southeast Asia, the threat is very real and bigger than ever particularly as the race by both Sunni and Shiite groups to build and deploy nuclear weapons continues.Like Carter before him, Obama has chosen to cut backdoor deals with the Mullahs in Iran, offering them power over Iraq and Afghanistan, in exchange for quieting things down enough to let him hang up a Mission Accomplished banner and pull the troops out. "Peace with honor", preferably before the next election. The rape law for Shiites in Afghanistan, the push for a US funded Hamas/Fatah Unity government in the territories and the rising expansion of the Taliban are all fruits of this arrangement.If Iran is to be our new best friend under this arrangement, Israel is to be our new best enemy.Obama stacked the deck by deploying Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State in a position that gave her an important title, but absolutely no power to go with it, while stacking the National Security Council and even the Pentagon with oil appointees in the pockets of the Saudis or his own left wing radical friends.Israel electing a conservative government really put the ball into play, freeing up even more resources for attacking Israel. The strategy runs something like this.The Obama Administration has broken down the Israel problem into two subsections, Israel itself, and American Jews.Obama's people have studied the problem and understand where Carter went wrong. Obama does not want to have the same image problems as Carter in the Jewish community. Should that happen, the Beloved Leader and his lapdog press are fully prepared to unleash a Chavez style hate-on targeting American Jews. But that would be inconvenient and messy. Even with the changing face of America, there are significant differences between the average American and European or Venezuelan, and what kind of ugliness they are willing to tolerate. So Obama's people have split their attention in handling the two factors as two different problems.American Jews - Obama has been clever about putting his Jewish appointees front and center. Like many minorities, some American Jews suffer from self-esteem problems that are soothed when they see a seeming acceptance. Of course what they fail to realize is that exploitation is not acceptance. And that Obama's appointees are creatures of his backers, Nazi collaborators like Soros, who have nothing but contempt for Jews, individually or collectively.While outwardly courting Jews, Obama's people have also been quietly shoving Jewish organizations and their leaders into a corner. Within the Jewish organizational world there has been a silent but deadly takeover of major Jewish groups by left wing radicals. Former alumni of the far left wing and anti-Israel groups like Breira or Coname in the 70's have been elevated to key positions in such organizations as the UJA Federation. Behind the scenes any Jewish leaders who expressed even doubts about Obama during the primariesThe Beloved Leader and his lapdog press are fully prepared to unleash a Chavez style hate-on targeting American Jews. were intimidated and silenced.Much as with conservatives, a list has been drawn up of those figures who can be won over, and those who cannot. The ones who can be won over are described as "moderates", the ones who cannot be won over are described as "extremists".Meanwhile a bevvy of left wing Jewish In Name Only groups have been organized to play their part. Key among them is the Soros funded J Street, a group created as an anti-Israel lobby meant to eventually replace AIPAC. Meanwhile AIPAC itself has been kept on the ropes with such things as the well timed Harman leak. The message once again is fairly clear, cooperate and keep quiet, or we'll destroy you.The multi-layered approach to American Jews can then be summed up as follows;1.) Co-opt existing Jewish organizations and swing them to the left using old school 70's leftists.2.) Create new "progressive" organizations to appeal to a younger generation of ethnically Jewish youth detached from any actual identity. Have these organizations generate attacks on the Israeli government and pro-Israel Jews, while creating phony polls indicating that most American Jews are behind them and Obama.3.) Silence and intimidate remaining Jewish organizations and leaders behind the scenes.The overall idea is to keep a happy face pasted on American Jewry while the knives are out in the dark.Israel - The basic understanding in the Obama Administration is that Israel Must Go. In the worldview of the more moderate Obama appointees, Israel is a destabilizing factor in the Middle East. To the more left wing Obama advisors, Israel is a Western imperialist colonialist state that must be destroyed in the name of revolutionary justice. To the Islamist mindset, Israel is a Kufir state that has no right to exist in the Dar Al Islam.While intractably hostile to Israel, the Obama Administration wants to avoid the kind of public confrontations that marked the Carter and Bush Sr administrations. Instead they would much rather model the way that the Clinton Administration waged a quiet war against Israel, removing one government, and forcing extensive concessions to terrorists, all the while keeping a happy face pasted on the whole affair.On the one hand that means avoiding harsh public attacks on Israel, but keeping the pressure up for Israel to make extensive far reaching one sided concessions, to accept Saudi and Arab League "peace plans", to legitimize Hamas as the new government of the Palestinian Authority, and to insure that Israel does not reply to any rocket or terrorist attacks.There are two forms of quiet leverage that the United States has on Israel, the first is financial and the second is military.On the financial side, the goal will be to bring down the Netanyahu government coalition by destabilizing Israel economically. This is the surest and most direct path to bringing down Israel's conservative government and replacing it with a left of center coalition. The Obama Administration has a wide variety of tactics at its disposal for doing so, from the overt, such as targeting Israeli exports and imports, to the covert, that would involve targeting the Shekel. Additionally fundraising in the US could be investigated and groups such as the Jewish National Fund, prevented from raising money in the US. All of these have been in play before at one time or another.On the military side, Obama's people will make their non-existent efforts to stop Iran's nukes conditional on more concessions to terrorists. Since Israel will never be able to make enough concessions and since Obama is working with Iran, rather than working to stop Iran's nukes, this is a hollow charade.Furthermore while Israel has already been locked out of the military technology pipeline for anything cutting edge, it still remains dependent on US military equipment for parts and supplies. The decades of US foreign aid have also served to create dependency. Unlike many other countries, including even Sweden, Israel does not have its own jet fighter. Israel's Air Force is heavily dependent on US weapons, parts and equipment. Cutting Israel off, would leave the Israeli military dangerously vulnerable in the case of a war. This is an effective chokehold that has been used before to prevent Israel from attacking Saddam Hussein during the Gulf War, as well as preventing Israel from carrying out a preemptive strike against its enemies before the Yom Kippur War.The overall Obama policy will be to push Israel to the brink, using financial and military blackmail against the Netanyahu government, while maintaining control over American Jews to prevent any protests or backtalk....American Jewish groups will support Obama... some because they were created precisely for that purpose, and others because they have been hijacked, cowed or subverted.The more Israel will offer, the more the Obama Administration will tighten the screws. No offer will be good enough, and Israel will be blamed for every breakdown in talks and every bit of violence that takes place. The media will portray Israel and particularly Netanyahu as extremist and intransigent. Hamas will be slowly whitewashed in the media, the same way that Arafat's goons were, (assuming that they prove more willing to cooperate in creating a positive media image of themselves than Ahmadinejad is.)The plan is to destroy Israel, and to do it by pushing Israel to the edge of the cliff and then over the cliff. Israel's enemies will be getting top of the line US military equipment. Israel will not. Israel will be squeezed economically until the Netanyahu government collapses, leaving a weak left wing leader like Livni in charge of Israel, and in charge of acceding to the new Pharaoh's demands.Meanwhile so-called American Jewish groups will support Obama all the way, some because they were created precisely for that purpose, e.g. J-Street, and others because they have been hijacked, cowed or subverted. That is the game plan and some of it's coming. The rest is already here.
www.IsraelNationalNews.com© Copyright IsraelNationalNews.com
2010/05/14 15:06

We're back and stronger than ever!

After a one-year hiatus, following our site being hacked and all of our blog entries erased by Obama's radical left-wing thugs, AnyoneButObama.org is back, and bigger and better than ever! We are now coded in such a way so that leftist hackers would have to destroy most of Google to take down this site. Furthermore we have added more robust solutions and features such as online real-time polls and petitions. Our Top Ten Reasons never to vote for Obama as well as our top Obama You Tubes are now much easier to navigate. Please check out our Cafe Press store for a plethora of new and unique AnyoneButObama branded merchandise.

Let the record show that our site was the most successful anti-Obama site during the 2008 election year. In just 6 months and with only $1,800 in capital we built a well researched site that attracted over 300,000 visitors. If only the national McCain campaign could boast such a low cost/visit ratio! With your help, we will sell enough AnyoneButObama merchandise to be fully self-sufficient going forward. Rest assured, every dollar you spend on this site brings us closer to our goal of making Obama a one-term president. On behalf of America, we thank you for your support!
2010/05/14 14:58

Welcome all those who seek truth!

Welcome to AnyoneButObama.org -- the site and organization that will educate the masses and save America from Barrack Hussein Obama! AnyoneButObama.org is a coalition of Democrats, Republicans and Independents who, having done thorough research on the background and politics of Barack Obama, have decided to vote for anyone but Obama and to convince as many fellow Americans as possible to do the same. Our site is designed to be the most concise yet thorough resource for exposing the truth about Obama and educating the hood-winked masses on the myriad of reasons not to vote for Obama.

If you give this site just 60 minutes of your time, we guarantee you, whatever your political inclination and proclivity, that you will NOT vote for Barrack Obama again, nor will you vote for any of the lackeys who support him. This challenge goes to even the most ardent Obama supporters. Please spend the first 30 minutes going through the best Obama youtubes on the right column of our homepage. Then, spend the next 30 minutes going through the Top Ten Reasons Not to Vote for Obama. By time you recover from your shock, after witnessing the truth the main-stream media has deprived you of for so long, you may notice that you have spent much more than 60 minutes on this site and have a hunger to discover so much more. If we have convinced you, and we will, please forward a link to our site to everyone you know. America’s future, and that of the Western World, depends on it.

Thank You!

Founder, AnyoneButObama.org
2010/05/14 14:30