The Supreme Court Keeps Trump Taxes Private for Now

Rejecting President Donald Trump’s complaints that he’s being harassed, the Supreme Court ruled Thursday in favor of a New York prosecutor’s demands for the billionaire president’s tax records. But in good political news for Trump, his taxes and other financial records almost certainly will be kept out of the public eye at least until after the November election.

In a separate case, the justices kept a hold on banking and other documents about Trump, family members and his businesses that Congress has been seeking for more than a year. The court said that while Congress has significant power to demand the president’s personal information, it is not limitless.

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US Sanctions Chinese Officials Over Repression of Minorities

The United States on Thursday imposed sanctions on three senior officials of the Chinese Communist Party, including a member of the ruling Politburo, for alleged human rights abuses targeting ethnic and religious minorities that China has detained in the western part of the country.

The decision to bar these senior officials from entering the U.S. is the latest of a series of actions the Trump administration has taken against China as relations deteriorate over the coronavirus pandemic, human rights, Hong Kong and trade. Just a day earlier, the administration had announced visa bans against officials deemed responsible for barring foreigners’ access to Tibet. Thursday’s step, however, hits a more senior level of leadership and is likely to draw a harsh response from Beijing.

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Missing Seoul Mayor’s Body Found After Massive Search

The missing mayor of South Korea’s capital, reportedly embroiled in sexual harassment allegations, was found dead early Friday, more than half a day after giving his daughter a will-like message and then leaving home, police said.

Police said they located Park Won-soon’s body near a traditional restaurant in wooded hills in northern Seoul, more than seven hours after they launched a massive search for him.

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USDA: Error Rate in National Food Stamp Program Increases in 2019

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is reporting an error rate of 7.36 percent for its Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for fiscal year 2019.

Despite the error rate, and after state government shutdowns over the coronavirus, the federal government significantly extended emergency SNAP funding for states to distribute.

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Small Business Administration Gave Loans to Multi-Million Dollar Companies

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the U.S. Treasury Department this week released the names of 4.9 million Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan recipient businesses and nonprofits that received $150,000 or more.

The mostly forgivable PPP loans were funded through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

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Weekly Jobless Claims Lower Than Expected at 1.3 Million

Jobless claims for the past week were lower than economists had predicted as workers begin returning to their jobs, according to data from the Labor Department shows.

The total number for jobless claims for the week ending in July 4 was 1.3 million, according to the Labor Department data, which is 99,000 fewer claims than the previous week. Economists surveyed by Down Jones had predicted 1.39 million jobless claims, according to CNBC.

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Brooks Brothers Files for Bankruptcy After 202 Years of Business

Brooks Brothers, one of the United States’ oldest and most prestigious retailers, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Wednesday after 202 years, CNBC reported.

The retailer, credited with dressing 40 U.S. presidents since its founding in 1818, had already been burdened with rising rent when it was devastated by the coronavirus pandemic, which sunk the company’s potential sale, according to CNBC.

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Harvard, MIT Sue to Block ICE Rule on International Students

Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology filed a federal lawsuit Wednesday challenging the Trump administration’s decision to bar international students from staying in the U.S. if they take classes entirely online this fall.

The lawsuit, filed in Boston’s federal court, seeks to prevent federal immigration authorities from enforcing the rule. The universities contend that the directive violates the Administrative Procedures Act because officials failed to offer a reasonable basis justifying the policy and because the public was not given notice to comment on it.

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Kanye West Says White Supremacists Doing ‘Devil’s Work’ Brought Planned Parenthoods in Cities

White supremacists placed Planned Parenthood clinics inside cities to “do the Devil’s work,” according to rapper and recently-declared presidential candidate Kanye West.

West, who announced his presidential bid July 4, spoke out regarding his political beliefs in an interview with Forbes where he discussed his disillusionment with President Donald Trump, his political beliefs, and his hopes for a West presidency.

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Exhausted Cities Face Another Challenge: A Surge in Violence

Still reeling from the coronavirus pandemic and street protests over the police killing of George Floyd, exhausted cities around the nation are facing yet another challenge: a surge in shootings that has left dozens dead, including young children.

The spike defies easy explanation, experts say, pointing to the toxic mix of issues facing America in 2020: an unemployment rate not seen in a generation, a pandemic that has killed more than 130,000 people, stay-at-home orders, rising anger over police brutality, intense stress, even the weather.

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All-Mail Voting Threatens Election Security, Study Finds

Mandatory voting by mail would undermine election security and endanger Americans’ right to have their votes counted, according to a report released Tuesday by the Honest Elections Project, a voter integrity group.

The report comes on the heels of a vote-by-mail scandal in Paterson, New Jersey, where 1 in 5 votes were disqualified.

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United Will Warn 36,000 Workers They Could be Laid Off

United Airlines is warning 36,000 employees – nearly half its U.S. staff – they could be furloughed in October, the clearest signal yet of how deeply the virus pandemic is hurting the airline industry.

The outlook for a recovery in air travel has dimmed in just the past two weeks, as infection rates rise in much of the U.S. and some states impose new quarantine requirements on travelers.

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Protective Gear for Medical Workers Begins to Run Low Again

The personal protective gear that was in dangerously short supply during the early weeks of the coronavirus crisis in the U.S. is running low again as the virus resumes its rapid spread and the number of hospitalized patients climbs.

A national nursing union is concerned that gear has to be reused. A doctors association warns that physicians’ offices are closed because they cannot get masks and other supplies. And Democratic members of Congress are pushing the Trump administration to devise a national strategy to acquire and distribute gear in anticipation of the crisis worsening into the fall.

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After Over a Month of Violent Rioting in Portland, Border Patrol Called in to Restore Order

After violent antifa riots were allowed to rock downtown Portland, Oregon, for over a month, Border Patrol agents over the holiday weekend were finally deployed to restore order.

Acting Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Mark Morgan expressed frustration over the situation on Fox News Sunday: “Where are the local political leaders?” he asked. “These are not protesters, these are criminals.”

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Paycheck Protection Program Is Supporting More Than 51 Million Small Business Jobs, Trump Administration Announces

The $670 billion Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has supported more than 51 million jobs since its launch in April, the Treasury Department and Small Business Administration announced Monday as it released information on 4.9 million loans disbursed by the program.

“The PPP is providing much-needed relief to millions of American small businesses, supporting more than 51 million jobs and over 80 percent of all small business employees, who are the drivers of economic growth in our country,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement Monday.

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House Democrats’ Funding Bill Includes Provision to Remove Confederate Statues

Confederate statues would be removed from the Capitol under a provision included in the Democrat House Appropriations Committee’s 2021 draft budget bill released Monday.

The nearly $4.2 billion funding proposal would mandate the removal of monuments to Confederate generals and would also call into question those statues of people who have “unambiguous records of racial intolerance,” according to a press release from the Appropriations Committee.

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Millions of Potential Coronavirus Vaccine Doses Already Being Made, NIH Director Says

Millions of coronavirus vaccine doses are being manufactured, even before testing has been completed, the National Institutes of Health director said in an interview recently.

Doses of potential vaccines are being made to shorten the time it traditionally takes to develop a drug for public use, director Dr. Francis Collins told Intelligencer. Collins said he is “guardedly optimistic” that at least one vaccine will pass through the large phase of trials by December.

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Gov. Cuomo’s Order Sent More Than 6,000 Coronavirus Patients into Nursing Homes, Officials Say

Democratic New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s orders sent more than 6,300 coronavirus patients to nursing homes at the height of the pandemic, new numbers from state officials show.

Thousands of elderly coronavirus patients died after Cuomo issued an order March 25 mandating assisted-living facilities admit coronavirus patients, and state officials are now reporting that the number of admitted carriers is even higher than previous estimates.

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Brazil’s President Bolsonaro Tests Positive for COVID-19

Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro said Tuesday he has tested positive for COVID-19 after months of downplaying the coronavirus’s severity while deaths mounted rapidly inside the country.

The 65-year-old populist who has been known to mingle in crowds without covering his face confirmed the results while wearing a mask and speaking to reporters huddled close in front of him in the capital, Brasilia. He said he is taking hydroxychloroquine, the anti-malaria drug that has not been proven effective against COVID-19.

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Richmond Removes Statue of Confederate Gen. J.E.B. Stuart

Work crews on Tuesday took down a monument to Confederate Gen. J.E.B. Stuart, the third major statue to be cleared away in less than a week as the Confederacy’s former capital rushes to remove symbols of oppression in response to protests against police brutality and racism.

As a crowd cheered, crews strapped the huge bronze equestrian statue in harnesses and used a crane to lift it from its granite base to be trucked away. Some in the crowd chanted “Black Lives Matter” after the statue was removed. One person sang, “Na na na na, na na na na, hey hey, goodbye.”

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Abolitionist, Advisor to President Abraham Lincoln – Frederick Douglass Statue Vandalized in New York Park

Police in Rochester were trying to determine Monday who ripped a statue of abolitionist Frederick Douglass from its base on the anniversary of one of his most famous speeches, delivered in the upstate New York city in 1852.

The statue of Douglass was taken on Sunday from Maplewood Park, a site along the Underground Railroad where Douglass and Harriet Tubman helped shuttle slaves to freedom. The statue was found at the brink of the Genesee River gorge about 50 feet from its pedestal, police said. There was damage to the base and a finger.

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Slow Processing, Lost Markets Mean New Challenges for Livestock Farmers

The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on many sectors of the economy and livestock farming is one of them.

Closures of public spaces such as schools, restaurants, bars, and hotels mean decreased demand for meat products. In addition, outbreaks of coronavirus-caused illness at meatpacking plants caused some large operations to shut down temporarily, swamping small mom-and-pop operations that are now booked into spring 2021.

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Kanye West Says He’s ‘Running For President,’ Picks Up Elon Musk’s Endorsement

by Mary Rose Corkery   Kanye West said he’s “running for president” on Saturday. “We must realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future. I am running for president of the United States,” West wrote on Twitter Saturday. We must now realize the…

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Cornell University Slammed for Allegedly Donating Student Fees to Black Lives Matter

In a letter to the editor published by The Cornell Sun, one student blasted the Ivy League’s Student Activities Funding Commission after it allegedly gave $10,000 to the Cornell Students for Black Lives fundraiser using mandatory student fees, without first telling the student body.

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Bellagio Error May Be Biggest Sportsbook Loss for Las Vegas

The nearly quarter-million dollars in winning wagers reportedly placed at MGM Resorts last Sunday might be the largest sportsbook loss in Las Vegas history on bets made after an event has started.

Seven longtime Las Vegas bookmakers can’t recall a larger loss, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports. But each oddsmaker has taken hits on past posts and said it’s a fairly common occurrence at books.

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Despite Supreme Court Win, Energy Companies Cancel $8 Billion Atlantic Coast Pipeline

The developers of the long-delayed, $8 billion Atlantic Coast Pipeline announced the cancellation of the multi-state natural gas project Sunday, citing uncertainties about costs, permitting and litigation.

Despite a victory last month at the United States Supreme Court over a critical permit, Dominion Energy and Duke Energy said in a news release that “recent developments have created an unacceptable layer of uncertainty and anticipated delays” for the 600-mile project designed to cross West Virginia and Virginia into North Carolina.

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FBI Arrests Antifa Ringleader of Attempt to Topple Andrew Jackson Statue in DC

The alleged “ringleader” in a recent attempt to destroy the Andrew Jackson statue in Washington DC was arrested Thursday, and charged with destruction of federal property.

Jason Charter, a known antifa agitator, was arrested at his home by the FBI and U.S. Park Police as part of a joint task force, Fox News reported.

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Activist Leaves Hong Kong After New Law to Advocate Abroad

Prominent Hong Kong democracy activist Nathan Law has left the city for an undisclosed location after testifying in a U.S. congressional hearing about a tough new security law imposed by mainland China on the semi-autonomous territory.

Law, who declined to disclose his whereabouts for safety, said in an interview with The Associated Press on Friday that he left because Hong Kong needs an advocate for democracy who can work internationally.

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New Virginia Gun Laws Take Effect Amid Nationwide Unrest

A host of gun control laws, passed months ago and spearheaded by Democratic Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, took effect on Wednesday in the commonwealth after months of fierce opposition from pro-firearm groups.

Northam signed the slew of gun restrictions in April after they passed the state’s General Assembly, where Democrats hold the majority, USA Today reported. The lawmakers faced dissent from over 20,000 angry citizens — many of whom were heavily armed — in the state’s capital in late January, according to Fox News.

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LA City Council Okays Replacing Police with Community Responders for Non-Violent Calls

The Los Angeles City Council approved a measure Tuesday that would allow unarmed community responders to step in for uniformed officers on non-violent calls, according to news reports.

The local government’s initiative was unanimous and will replace cops on calls for drug overdoses and mental health issues, among other non-violent situations, according to CBS Los Angeles. The city is likely to draw on its health and homeless departments to strategize on the new style of policing.

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‘When Is Fourth of July?’: Here Are the Top Five Google Searches Asking About Independence Day

Google revealed the top five searches and questions people are asking about July 4 when they visit the company’s platform ahead of Independence Day.

“Independence Day is upon us, and that means searches for fireworks, sparklers and tons of delicious recipes are on the rise,” Google Trends noted Tuesday three days ahead of Independence Day. Along with the greeting, the company also showed the top questions people are asking regarding July 4.

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Iran Declines to Disclose Cause of Mysterious Nuke Site Fire

An online video and messages purportedly claiming responsibility for a fire that analysts say damaged a centrifuge assembly plant at Iran’s underground Natanz nuclear site deepened the mystery Friday around the incident — even as Tehran insisted it knew the cause but would not make it public due to “security reasons.”

The multiple, different claims by a self-described group called the “Cheetahs of the Homeland” included language used by several exiled Iranian opposition organizations. They also focused almost entirely on Iran’s nuclear program, viewed by Israel as a danger to its very existence.

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Ohio School District Dropping Redskins Name for Sports Teams

An Ohio school district has decided that its high school sports teams should no longer be known as the Redskins.

The Forest Hills Board of Education voted 4-1 on Thursday to “retire” the name and mascot at Anderson High School. A new name has not been chosen, and officials plan to soon announce a timeline and process for how a new name and mascot will be selected.

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LA School Police Chief Quits After Budget Cut by School Board

The Los Angeles School police chief resigned from his post Wednesday, less than a year after he took the job and less than 24 hours after the district’s board cut $25 million from his department’s budget, Fox News Reports.

Police Chief Tod Chamberlain said the cuts put him in a “position that makes my ability to effectively, professionally and safely impact those groups unachievable.”

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Hundreds of Bush Administration Officials Declare Support for Joe Biden

A large group of officials who worked for former President George W. Bush will endorse the former Democrat Vice President Joe Biden.

The group formed a super PAC Wednesday, called “43 Alumni for Biden,” a reference to Bush, the 43rd president and described its formation as an effort to restore “the principles of unity, tolerance and compassion to the greatest elected office in the world,” according to Reuters.

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PG&E Exits Bankruptcy, Pays $5 Billion into Wildfire Fund

Pacific Gas & Electric has emerged from a contentious bankruptcy saga that began after its long-neglected electrical grid ignited wildfires in California that killed more than 100 people.

The nation’s largest utility announced Wednesday it emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy and paid $5.4 billion in initial funds and 22.19% of its stock into a trust for victims of wildfires caused by its outdated equipment.

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AP Source: NFL to Play Black Anthem Before National Anthem

“Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing” will be performed live or played before “The Star-Spangled Banner” prior to each NFL game during Week 1 and the league is considering putting names of victims of police brutality on helmet decals or jersey patches, a person familiar with the discussions told The Associated Press.

The person said the league is working collaboratively with players to recognize victims of systemic racism throughout the season in a variety of ways. The person spoke to the AP on Thursday on condition of anonymity because discussions between the league and the NFL Players Association are ongoing.

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Steve Bannon Presents: Descent Into Hell

An all new LIVE STREAM of Descent Into Hell starts at 9 a.m. Central Time on Saturday.

The two-hour special takes a closer look at the life of everyday Chinese citizens under the Chinese Communist Party and will air live on the John Fredericks Radio Network, America’s Voice Network, Dish TV Channel 219, The Epoch Times, ND TV, GTV and GNews in Mandarin.

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As Americans Gather at Rushmore to Hear Trump, Protesters Set Roadblocks

President Donald Trump planned a fiery Mount Rushmore speech Friday night including denunciations of protesters he says are trying to “tear down” the nation’s history. He’s adding the condemnation of those who pull down statues to a big fireworks show and his more traditional July Fourth praise of America’s past and values.

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US Tries to Seize Iranian Gas Heading Toward Venezuela

U.S. federal prosecutors are seeking to seize four tankers sailing toward Venezuela with gasoline supplied by Iran, the latest attempt to disrupt ever-closer trade ties between the two heavily sanctioned anti-American allies.

The civil-forfeiture complaint filed late Wednesday in the District of Columbia federal court alleges that the sale was arranged by a businessman, Mahmoud Madanipour, with ties to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, a U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organization.

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Law Prof Wants to Scrap US Constitution’s ‘Racist’ and ‘Gendered’ Language

A law professor is calling for changes to the “outdated” language of the Constitution.

Richard Albert, a professor of law and government at the University of Texas-Austin, denounced the Constitution in an op-ed for The Hill published Tuesday, saying that “its gendered and racist words stand in the way of true reconciliation in this divided country and have no place in any modern society.”

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FBI Arrests Epstein Pal, Accused of Enabling Abuse of Girls

British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell was arrested Thursday on charges she helped lure at least three girls — one as young as 14 — to be sexually abused by the late financier Jeffrey Epstein, who was accused of victimizing dozens of girls and women over many years.

According to the indictment, Maxwell, who lived for years with Epstein and was his frequent companion on trips around the world, facilitated his crimes and on some occasions joined him in sexually abusing the girls.

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June Jobs Report: 4.8 Million Jobs Added, Unemployment at 11.1 Percent

The U.S. added 4.8 million jobs in June, while the unemployment declined to 11.1%, according to Department of Labor data released Thursday.

Total non-farm payroll employment rose by 4.8 million in June, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics report, and the number of unemployed persons fell by 3.2 million to 17.8 million. These numbers mark the second month of both increasing jobs and dropping unemployment since the country lost a record 20.5 million jobs due to the coronavirus pandemic closures.

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