Senator Orrin Hatch Says He Wrote Tax Provision At Center Of Corker Controversy

Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, on Monday admitted he crafted a controversial tax provision, which could personally enrich Sen. Bob Corker, House Speaker Paul Ryan, President Donald Trump, and top Republican lawmakers directly overseeing the bill. The provision could additionally benefit the real estate industry — which has been one Hatch’s largest sources of campaign donations.

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Top Democratic Candidate for Governor of Tennessee Earned $19 Million Over 4-Year Stretch, Tax Documents Show

Karl Dean Tax Summary

Former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean, a Democratic candidate for governor, had $19.2 million in taxable income from 2013 to 2016, according to documents reviewed by The Tennessean, which reported: Last year alone, Dean and his wife, Delta Anne Davis, who used to work for the Southern Environmental Law Center, earned nearly $2.7 million. The release from the former Nashville mayor — after declining to do so during an initial request of all seven gubernatorial candidates — provides additional insight into the wealth of the numerous candidates in the 2018 Tennessee governor’s race. This puts Dean far ahead his leading challenger for the Democratic nomination in terms of income. He made almost 9 times as much as House Minority Leader Craig Fitzhugh — the only other Democrat in the race ($2.7 vs. $313,000 in 2016).  This is significant because Dean has already demonstrated a commitment to funding his own campaign, when necessary: “During his first run for Nashville mayor in 2007, Dean pumped around $1.5 million in personal dollars toward his run,” reports The Tennessean.  However, Dean was less forthcoming with financial information than other candidates: While Black and Fitzhugh provided copies of their 1040s from 2016, Dean did not. Instead, like Harwell, he provided an income tax summary…

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GOP Group FOIAs Emails Of Anti-Trump EPA Employees and Now They’re Mad

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) employees who publicly criticized the Trump administration are crying foul after a Republican group filed a public information request against them, according to a Sunday report from The New York Times. A Republican campaign group made public information requests for the emails of three agency employees who communicated with congressional Democrats critical of the EPA. The targeted employees believe the EPA is orchestrating a type of fishing expedition against its critics.

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Steve Gill Commentary: T.E.A. Sticking It to Teachers and Taxpayers with Needless Lawsuits

By Steve Gill   The Tennessee Education Association (TEA) often touts their legal prowess in order to justify the annual dues they extract from their union membership. To prove their claim they seem intent on creating lots of litigation through misuse of the 2011 Professional Educators Collaborative Conferencing Act. That Act was intended in part to replace contentious fights with collaboration and cooperation among the parties. Now, TEA seems to brag that PECCA is helping them generate lawsuits rather than prevent them. Most of these suits provide little, if any, actual benefit to their membership. The Maury County case mentioned in the article is a great example. TEA complained that the PECCA voting system used by Maury County was faulty and resulted in an inordinate number of votes for a competing teacher’s organization. After the complaint was raised, the “other side” responded simply and directly: “let’s revote.” That is exactly what the TEA had originally requested. However, TEA’s local affiliate, Maury County Education Association, didn’t see it that way and instead initiated a lawsuit asking for a revote. Why would the teachers’ union sue to get what had already been offered? Because these lawsuits are part of a marketing campaign…

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Trump Senses Victory on US Tax Overhaul

Trump Tax Victory

Near the end of his first year in office, President Donald Trump could be on the verge of his first major legislative victory: an overhaul of America’s tax code and a partial repeal of former President Barack Obama’s signature health care law. “As a candidate, I promised we would pass a massive tax cut for the everyday working American families who are the backbone and the heartbeat of our country,” Trump tweeted Sunday. “Now, we are just days away.”

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US Vetoes UN Resolution Rejecting Trump’s Jerusalem Decision

The United States on Monday vetoed a draft UN resolution rejecting President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, after all 14 other Security Council members backed the measure. The veto cast by US Ambassador Nikki Haley highlighted Washington’s isolation over Trump’s announcement that the US embassy will be moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, effectively ignoring Palestinian claims on the city.

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Pope Condemns ‘Fake News’ And ‘Media Bias’ As ‘Very Serious Sin’

Pope Francis

Pope Francis told members of the Catholic media over the weekend that peddling in “fake news” constitutes a “grave sin that hurts the heart of the journalist and hurts others.” “You shouldn’t fall into the ‘sins of communication’ disinformation, or giving just one side, calumny that is sensationalised, or defamation,” the Pope said, according to The Associated Press.

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Faith: Verse of the Day for Tuesday, December 19

Tennessee Star - Verse of the Day

  VERSE OF THE DAY Be blessed and be a blessing December 19, Tuesday Matthew 10:32-33 “Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. 33 But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven. 1 John 1:5 This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.

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