REVEALED: Facebook CEO Responds to Board Member’s Support of Donald Trump

Silicon Valley billionaire and Facebook board member Peter Thiel has been widely criticized for his support of the Republican nominee, Donald Trump. 

Thiel officially announced his support in July during the GOP National Convention. He presented a speech during the event, calling Trump a “builder,” ready to put America back on track.

Then, just last week, Thiel decided to up his support for the Republican nominee. The New York Times revealed that Thiel pledged $1.25 million in donations to Trump’s campaign, according to “a person close to the investor.” 

The news prompted Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to address the “issue” of Thiel supporting Trump. In a leaked, internal post, Zuckerberg did the unexpected: he defended Thiel’s right to support Trump and stressed the importance of free speech and freedom of expression in our society. 

I want to quickly address the questions and concerns about Peter Thiel as a board member and Trump supporter. 

We care deeply about diversity. That’s easy to say when it means standing up for ideas you agree with. It’s a lot harder when it means standing up for the rights of people with different viewpoints to say what they care about. That’s even more important.

We can’t create a culture that says it cares about diversity and then excludes almost half the country because they back a political candidate. There are many reasons a person might support Trump that do not involve racism, sexism, xenophobia or accepting sexual assault. It may be because they believe strongly in smaller government, a different tax policy, healthcare system, religious issues, gun rights or any other issue where he disagrees with Hillary.

I know there are strong views on the election this year both in the US and around the world. We see them play out on Facebook every day. Our community will be stronger for all our differences—not only in areas like race and gender, but also in areas like political ideology and religion.

That’s ultimately what Facebook is about: giving everyone the power to share our experiences, so we can understand each other a bit better and connect us a little closer together.

Back in May, Gizmodo reported that several members of the Facebook editorial team responsible for curating trending content allegedly knowingly suppressed conservative news stories. Specifically, they prevented stories about the right-wing CPAC gathering, Mitt Romney, Rand Paul, as well as news about Facebook, from appearing in the section—even if those stories were trending among the site’s users. The workers also told Gizmodo that they were required to “inject” other stories into the feed, even if they weren't gaining any traction on the site.

In response to the news, Zuckerberg met with a number of conservatives to address their concern and then released a statement saying that “Republicans have always been an important part of Facebook” and expressing his desire to “build trust.”

This latest news regarding Theil seems to show Zuckerberg doubling down on his commitment to make Facebook a marketplace of ideas.

Stop Hillary PAC Spends $1 Million in Swing States to Remind Voters About Benghazi

The Stop Hillary PAC wants to make sure that swing state voters don't forget that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton failed to lead during the 2012 terror raid in Benghazi, Libya. So, they are re-airing an ad from last year that highlights her inaction.

“Now we know why Hillary deleted her emails. She didn’t want Americans to know how much she fears being held accountable for Benghazi,” said Ted Harvey, chairman of the Stop Hillary PAC. “Stop Hillary PAC isn’t backing down. We are doubling down. We are prepared to spend up to $1 million in the next few weeks to re-air that ad and stop Hillary Clinton from becoming president.”

The ad, entitled, "I'd Like to Ask," gives a voice to the four men killed in Benghazi. One-by-one, Glen Doherty, Tyrone Woods, Sean Smith and U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens ask Clinton how she could ignore the calls of help coming from Benghazi, why she lied that the attack was the spontaneous reaction to a YouTube video, and why she tried to silence the testimony of a Benghazi whistleblower.

The PAC is especially hoping the ad will make an impression in Arizona, where Clinton is currently up be five points, according to recent polling.

“We cannot take Arizona for granted, as the most recent poll shows Hillary up by five points in the state,” Harvey said. “Arizona is more of a swing state than most people realize, and it is critical in the quest to reach 270 electoral votes.”

Cardinal Dolan Reveals "Touching Moments" Between Clinton and Trump at Al Smith Dinner

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump traded barbs Thursday night at the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner, but there were a few “touching moments” between them, Cardinal Dolan revealed.

“After the little prayer, Trump turned to Clinton and said, ‘You are one tough and talented woman,’” Dolan said in an interview with NBC News. "[Trump] said, 'This has been a good experience, this whole campaign, as tough as it’s been.'"

Clinton replied, "Donald, whatever happens, we need to work together afterward."

The politeness is surprising given the animosity they’ve showed toward one another on the campaign trail. Cardinal Dolan, who sat between the two during the dinner, even joked that he was catching a cold from sitting in the chilliest place on earth.

And while he admitted there were “awkward” moments, he said he was moved by some of their private conversations.

 "I was very moved by the obvious attempt on behalf of both Sec. Clinton and Mr. Trump ... to be courteous, get along, to say nice things privately to one another. I was very moved by that, that was pleasant," Dolan said. 

ISIS Executes 284 Men and Boys in Mosul

ISIS has executed 284 men and boys in Mosul, Iraq, according to a CNN intelligence source.

A mass grave was established for the dead as ISIS used a bulldozer to dump the corpses at the scene of the executions.  The victims were all shot and some were children, said the source, but CNN could not independently confirm the claim.
The United Nations earlier said it is "gravely worried" that ISIS has taken 550 families from villages around Mosul and is using them as human shields as Iraqi forces engaged the ISIS stronghold.  
Two hundred families from Samalia village and 350 families from Najafia were forced out Monday and taken to Mosul in what appears to be "an apparent policy by ISIS to prevent civilians escaping," Ravina Shamdasani, deputy spokeswoman for the UN Human Rights Office, told CNN.
Meanwhile, ISIS launched a major counter-offensive on the city of Kirkuk in retaliation on Friday morning.

The Islamic State's assault on Kirkuk, which lies in an oil- producing region, killed 18 members of the security forces and workers at a power station outside the city, including two Iranians, according to Reuters.

Of Course, Facebook Had An Internal Debate About Banning Trump’s Posts

Remember when Donald Trump wanted a total and complete shutdown of Muslim immigration into the United States. Well, of course, the social justice warriors at Facebook too deep, deep offense to that, setting of an internal debate whether to ban the presidential nominee’s posts from the social media network over violations of its terms of service (i.e. hate speech). The site’s director, Peter Thiel, pledging $1.25 million effort to elect the billionaire president, exacerbated the tension on this matter between Trump and Facebook, according to The Wall Street Journal. The platform recently said “In the weeks ahead, we’re going to begin allowing more items that people find newsworthy, significant, or important to the public interest—even if they might otherwise violate our standards.” Yet, all of this talk about content, free speech, censorship, and Trump began with those December 2015 remarks about banning Muslims, which was a reaction to the horrific terrorist attack in San Bernardino:

Issues around Mr. Trump’s posts emerged when he posted on Facebook a link to a Dec. 7 campaign statement “on preventing Muslim immigration.” The statement called for “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” Mr. Trump has since backed away from an outright ban based on religion, saying his policies would target immigrants from countries with a record of terrorism.

Users flagged the December content as hate speech, a move that triggered a review by Facebook’s community-operations team, with hundreds of employees in several offices world-wide. Some Facebook employees said in internal chat rooms that the post broke Facebook’s rules on hate speech as detailed in its internal guidelines, according to people familiar with the matter.

Content reviewers were asked by their managers not to remove the post, according to some of the people familiar. Facebook’s head of global policy management, Monika Bickert, later explained in an internal post that the company wouldn’t take down any of Mr. Trump’s posts because it strives to be impartial in the election season, according to people who saw the post.

During one of Mr. Zuckerberg’s weekly town hall meetings in late January at the company’s Menlo Park, Calif., headquarters, a Muslim employee asked how the executive could condone Mr. Trump’s comments. Mr. Zuckerberg acknowledged that Mr. Trump’s call for a ban did qualify as hate speech, but said the implications of removing them were too drastic, according to two people who attended the meeting. Mr. Zuckerberg said he backed Ms. Bickert’s call, they said.

Many employees supported the decision. “Banning a U.S. presidential candidate is not something you do lightly,” said one person familiar with the decision.

But others, including some Muslim employees at Facebook, were upset that the platform would make an exception. In Dublin, where many of Facebook’s content reviewers work, more than a dozen Muslim employees met with their managers to discuss the policy, according to another person familiar with the matter. Some created internal Facebook groups protesting the decision, while others threatened to leave.

In the end, these folks lost—and the decision by Zuckerberg was final. Facebook doesn’t get good marks from conservatives, given that Zuckerberg has voiced his support for some of Obama’s controversial policies, like rewriting federal immigration laws via executive order, and he’s from Silicon Valley; a techno-centric mecca that’s chock full of progressive lefties. Yet, you have to give credit where credit is due: he held firm against what was probably an intense internal debate over whether to ban a presidential candidate from posting material. On the other hand, the site is expected to reap $300 million from online political advertising this cycle, so that might have something to do with it as well. Nevertheless, whether it was the aspect of losing revenue, allowing the site to share both liberal and conservative views from either candidates, or a mixture of the two, I guess we can say that Zuckerberg made the right call. After all, hate speech criteria is usually social justice warrior drivel, in which any speech that offends them is considered something akin to a Nazi rally. The Journal did note, as did many publications at the time, that Trump would only restrict immigration from countries with ties to terrorism, which isn’t controversial. In fact, it might be a popular proposal with the spike in terrorism attacks, especially from ISIS.

At the end, Facebook is a business. It takes pride in being a platform where news is shared, money can be raised, and people can connect. During that December month, which was preceded by ISIS killed over 100 French citizens in Paris, there was a concern about Syrian refugees being infiltrated by terrorists, there was no way to screen all of those (10,000 in all for now) coming here regarding possible ties to terrorism. It was a huge issue, which the Republicans took seriously while the Democrats mocked them; a sign that this party shouldn’t be taken seriously on national security. Is a Muslim ban outrageous? Yes. It is hate speech? Hardly. If a pro-lifer called a pro-choice activist a baby killer (there are better ways to convey defense of the unborn), I would say that’s a bit over the top, like the Muslim ban, but hardly what is actual hate speech.

I use the pro-life position as an example since there are multiple instances where those activists are viewed as spreading hate speech. Folks, even pro-Trump chalkings are considered hate speech. It’s absurd and again the Left’s notion of such despicable speech should always be subject to extreme scrutiny. In the end, it’s usually a blanket attempt to ban opinions they disagree with.

What Trump says is controversial. It’s provocative, but it’s nowhere near the language used in Klan rallies, which is the purest form of hate speech in America. Moreover, the fight to ban so-called hate speech has led to the deplorable phenomena known as safe spaces, speech codes, and triggering. In some cases, it’s led to our history being targeted for the sake of not making soft, weak liberal students uncomfortable.

Also, banning the GOP nominee from posting because you disagree with him…c’mon. There are a lot of despicable opinions out there folks. Some are blatantly racist; others merely fall within the realm of being a conservative, like being pro-life, which isn’t racist. The trick is to tolerate those terrible opinions, while having the will to simply walk away from someone spewing racist filth. You can counter protest those folks too, you know. There are many ways to fight true hate speech without taking those censorship steroids that's become a terrible addiction for the Left.

Watch Live: Trump Speaks in Newtown

WSJ: On SCOTUS, Trump Has ‘Superior Grasp’ On Constitution, While Clinton's Views Threaten Liberty

The Wall Street Journal editorial board tore into Hillary Clinton’s debate performance regarding the Supreme Court, saying that she represents a view that threatens American liberty, while giving Republican nominee, Donald Trump, props for having the superior grasp of our constitution.

For starters, The Journal ripped into Clinton’s notion that the Supreme Court should represent us, especially in its composition. That’s wrong. That’s what the legislative branch is for. Second, they aptly noted how Clinton supports abortion on demand and without exception, which is an extreme position. Support for third-trimester (aka late-term abortion) abortions is incredibly low—and there already is an exception for the life of the mother in the 2007 Gonzalez v. Carhart decision, which upheld the federal ban on partial birth abortion. On guns, Clinton pretty much said that she would appoint judges who would overturn the landmark Heller decision, but not before giving us all a chuckle by saying she supports the Second Amendment. In all, Clinton’s Supreme Court would be everything we on the Right have feared, a hard left, activist court that will seek to undermine individual rights to gun ownership and create a more solid legal basis for killing babies right up until birth. That’s one, hot American mess:

“The Supreme Court should represent all of us. That’s how I see the Court,” she said. “And the kind of people that I would be looking to nominate to the court would be in the great tradition of standing up to the powerful, standing up on our behalf of our rights as Americans.”

Where to begin with that one? The Supreme Court doesn’t—or shouldn’t—“represent” anyone. In the U.S. system that’s the job of the elected branches. The courts are appointed, not elected, so they can be nonpartisan adjudicators of competing legal claims.

Mrs. Clinton is suggesting that the Court should be a super-legislature that vindicates the will of what she calls “the American people,” which apparently excludes “the powerful.” But last we checked, the Constitution protects everyone, even the powerful. The law is supposed to protect individual rights, not an abstraction called “the people.”

The Democrat went downhill from there, promising to appoint judges who would essentially rewrite the First and Second Amendments. Asked about the 2008 Heller decision that upheld an individual right to bear arms, Mrs. Clinton claimed to support “reasonable regulation.” She said she criticized Heller because it overturned a District of Columbia law intended merely “to protect toddlers from guns and so they wanted people with guns to safely store them.”

Toddlers had nothing to do with it.


If Mrs. Clinton supports such gun restrictions, then she thinks an individual’s right to bear arms is meaningless. If the Justices she appoints agree with her, then they can gradually turn Heller into a shell of a right, restriction by restriction, even without overturning the precedent.

Then there’s the First Amendment, which Mrs. Clinton wants to rewrite by appointing Justices she said would “stand up and say no to Citizens United, a decision that has undermined the election system in our country because of the way it permits dark, unaccountable money to come into our electoral system.”

Citizens United is the 2010 Supreme Court decision that found that unions and corporations can spend money on political speech—in that specific case for a movie that was critical of Mrs. Clinton. The Democrat seems to take the different view that while atomized individuals might have the right to criticize politicians, heaven forbid if they want to band together to do it as a political interest group.

As for “dark” money, she certainly knows that territory. Does money get any darker than undisclosed Clinton Foundation donations from foreign business magnates tied to uranium concessions in Kazakhstan?

It’s no surprise that this is Clinton’s vision of America, especially on gun rights. She’s said publicly that she wants to look into Australian-style gun control, which includes gun bans and confiscation. Democrats and the anti-gun Left try to blind the public with the notion that they are for common sense gun control proposals, all of which are already established law. For abortion, it’s also no surprise that this party wants is adopting the abortion on demand position. After years of trying to convince the public that killing babies is totally okay—the Left has utterly failed. So, in a temper tantrum, they back this position, while saying that all opposition is due to the sexist, misogynistic system of patriarchy. Oh, and because the GOP hates women, or something. Are they aware that almost 30 percent of its members describe themselves as pro-life and are gun owners? For those people, the GOP is always open.

Trump isn’t the perfect candidate. In fact, like Clinton, he’s incredibly flawed and unpopular, but he won the primary, he’s the Republican nominee, and he’s not Hillary Clinton. If anything, the latter part should be enough to convince the Never Trump wing of standing idly by and allowing Clinton to easily take the White House. I’m sure many of you know that I’m not a Trump fan, but you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know that he’s better than Clinton and a Trump White House working with a Republican Congress is better that Clinton’s anti-gun, pro-abortion progressive cesspool that she wants to force all of us to take a dip in. Yes, I will call out Trump for when he goes off the hinges or says something stupid, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to back away and vote for Clinton or stay on the sidelines and abstain. You can vote for someone, while finding their brand of politics and personality to be incredibly unappealing. That point is magnified when the opposing candidate is Hillary Rodham Clinton. If you don’t want a Supreme Court that undercuts the First Amendment, the Second Amendment, and promotes a legal framework for abortion on demand, the choice for president is explicitly clear.

Philippine President Clarifies His 'America Has Lost' Remarks

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has made some controversial remarks in recent weeks. In September, he called President Obama a "son of a whore." He then raised eyebrows when he said the Phillippines would not be taking part in military drills with the U.S. earlier this month. In Beijing, China on Thursday, he said matter-of-factly that he is cutting off military and economic ties to the United States.

"America has lost now. I've realigned myself in your ideological flow," he told business leaders in Beijing on Thursday. "And maybe I will also go to Russia to talk to Putin and tell him that there are three of us against the world: China, Philippines and Russia. It's the only way."

After these biting remarks, the Obama administration immediately responded. They have not received any such requests from Duterte, Deputy White House Press Secretary Eric Schultz told reporters on Thursday.

Now, Duterte is walking back his comments. He claims he did not mean total separation from the U.S. He just wants a more independent foreign policy so the Phillippines can pursue a stronger relationship with China. He cannot cut economic ties to America, he ensured the press.

"It is not severance of ties. When you say severance of ties, you cut diplomatic relations. I cannot do that," the Philippine leader told reporters at a midnight news conference in his southern home city of Davao.

"It's in the best interest of my countrymen to maintain that relationship."

Clinton Foundation: Hillary Personally Negotiated $12 Million Pay Day From Morocco's King

Why was Hillary Clinton still entertaining a lucrative face-to-face meeting with Morocco's king on behalf of the Clinton Foundation, even after she'd announced her presidential run last year?  Because there was a lot of money at stake, hacked Wikileaks emails reveal. Fox News' Ed Henry reports:

Just hours after Hillary Clinton dodged a question at the final presidential debate about charges of "pay to play" at the Clinton Foundation, a new batch of WikiLeaks emails surfaced with stunning charges that the candidate herself was at the center of negotiating a $12 million commitment from King Mohammed VI of Morocco. One of the more remarkable parts of the charge is that the allegation came from Clinton's loyal aide, Huma Abedin, who described the connection in a January 2015 email exchange with two top advisers to the candidate, John Podesta and Robby Mook. Abedin wrote that "this was HRC's idea" for her to speak at a meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative in Morocco in May 2015 as an explicit condition for the $12 million commitment from the king. "She created this mess and she knows it," Abedin wrote to Podesta and Mook. The "mess" refers in part to the fact that the three Clinton advisers were discussing the possibility of the former secretary of state pulling out of speaking at the May 2015 event because it was happening one month after the official launch of her presidential campaign and could raise more questions about her role at the foundation.

In January 2015, Mook indicated Clinton was still considering whether to attend the event, even though her advisers clearly seemed to be concerned about the appearance of such heavy involvement in the foundation amid questions about its fundraising. With the subject line, "FYI CGI Africa," Mook sent an email to Podesta and Abedin on January 18, 2015. "Came up on our call with HRC," wrote Mook. "John flagged the same issues we discussed, Huma. HRC said she's sitll(sic)considering." Abedin wrote back later that day, and suggested the King would be furious if Clinton pulled out of the event. "Just to give you some context, the condition upon which the Moroccans agreed to host the meeting was her participation," Abedin wrote. "If hrc was not part if(sic) it, meeting was a non-starter." Abedin added that CGI had not even come up with the idea to hold the event in Morocco, instead it was generated by Clinton herself. "This was HRC's idea, our office approached the Moroccans and they 100 percent believe they are doing this at her request," wrote Abedin. "The King has personally committed approx $12 million both for the endowment and to support the meeting."...While Clinton was secretary of state, her department in 2011 charged that the Moroccan government was behind "arbitrary arrests and corruption in all branches of government."

The King of Morocco set up an elaborate visit for Hillary Clinton, apparently at her suggestion, and agreed to contribute $12 million to the foundation.  Given his country's blemished corruption record -- according to Clinton's State Department -- what did the monarch believe he might receive in exchange for his generosity, one wonders?  Surely something was worth $12 million to him, and it couldn't have been her mere presence.  (In another questionable episode, the ISIS-funding Qatari regime offered a $1 million "birthday gift" to Bill Clinton, asking for five minutes of face time with the former president to present the check.  This extreme generosity cannot realistically be viewed as purely altruistic).  At Wednesday's debate, Mrs. Clinton side-stepped questions about pay-for-play allegations surrounding the Clinton Foundation -- whose high level donors have received preferential treatment in terms of access to Sec. Clinton, coveted invitationscontracts, and even appointments.  It was one giant conflict of interest.  She boasted of the organization's strong charity-to-overhead cost ratio, as well as its strong ratings from charity watchdogs.  What she failed to mention was that the foundation's finances have looked much more profligate and wasteful in the recent past, and that the foundation was on a charity watch list -- getting removed under heavy political pressure in 2015.  Mrs. Clinton has egregiously mischaracterized the level of transparency with which her family ran the organization while she was Secretary of State, during which time she repeatedly violated her ethics agreement with the Obama administration.  Oh, and here's another curious little tidbit from new Wikileaks documents.  I share Democrats' alarm about Russia clearly attempting to influence our election, but granting and setting those concerns aside, how can the Clinton campaign explain this?

Political campaigns are legally barred from any coordination with SuperPACs.  Via CBS News, I'll leave you with this delightful flashback video of Hillary admonishing her underlings at State to be vigilant about, er, cybersecurity:

Photo credit: PBS

Flashback Friday: Here's President George H. W. Bush's Letter To President Bill Clinton On His First Day On The Job

A letter written by President George H. W. Bush to President Bill Clinton on his first day as president is going viral as a reminder of a time when civility seemed to exist in politics. Bush wrote the letter to Clinton to encourage him and wish him well in his new job.

Jan 20, 1993

Dear Bill,

When I walked into this office just now I felt the same sense of wonder and respect that I felt four years ago. I know you will feel that, too.

I wish you great happiness here. I never felt the loneliness some Presidents have described.

There will be very tough times, made even more difficult by criticism you may not think is fair. I’m not a very good one to give advice; but just don’t let the critics discourage you or push you off course.

You will be our President when you read this note. I wish you well. I wish your family well.

Your success now is our country’s success. I am rooting hard for you.

Good luck-


Those were the days, weren't they?

Bill Clinton Destroys "Old White Gray-Haired" Americans, Says Immigrants Keep America Young

Bill Clinton acknowledged Friday during a campaign speech for his wife that there have been millions of Americans left behind as the the world advances on its ultra-progressive path.  What he failed to do is mention any shift in pace or remorse for the harm that such liberal policies cause.

“We know that there are whole areas of America that have been left out and left behind,” Clinton acknowledged.  “But so has coal country, and most of them are supporting [Hillary’s] opponent because they’ve been told that President Obama and those of us who think something has to be done about climate change are responsible for the loss of those jobs.”

Clinton said that anger does not solve the problems America faces.  He also said that illegal immigrants are keeping America young.

“Even in our own lives, there are reasons to be angry. But answers work better. There are always reasons to be frustrated. But empowerment is the only answer... They’re against immigration reform when that’s the only thing that we got keeping us young right now. Our first-generation Americans."

He said that old gray-haired white guys should be worried about who is going to pay for Social Security and Medicare.

“All these old gray-haired white guys, how do they think our Social Security is going to be paid out and our Medicare is going to get funded?,” Clinton stated.  “We need you. We all need this. Everybody has got a legitimate beef. Sometimes the things that happen are unfair and unjust…What are you going to do about it and how are you going to feel about it?”

“We’ve got to be a tomorrow country again. Can’t do it without a mind,” he said, and a “heart well turned.”

The Clinton's continue to show their disdain for white people throughout America, especially old white males.  

Watch Live: Clinton Speaks in Cleveland

ICYMI: Howard Dean Was Not Prepared To Discuss Quid Pro Quo Allegations At State, FBI...At All

While this week has been dominated by the last presidential debate, Wikileaks, discussing whether locker room talk actually exists, you probably missed former DNC chairman Howard Dean’s trainwreck interview with MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts, who asked him how the Clinton campaign will get ahead of the rather unsettling accusation that there was an alleged quid pro quo offer between the FBI and the State Department. Both State and the FBI have stringently denied that any such arrangement occurred, though it was mentioned in the latest batch of the FBI’s notes on the investigation into Clinton’s email server that were released this week.

The notes indicate that the Under Secretary of State for Management Patrick Kennedy offered a quid pro quo concerning reclassifying some of Clinton’s emails in return for more FBI agents being allowed to enter forbidden countries. Howard Dean seemed to think that these FBI notes and Wikileaks were the same, spouting off the talking point that these were fake, and that the Russians leaked it. It’s mere innuendo from the mind of someone’s imagination, according to Dean.

Roberts reminded him that this wasn’t the Russians who indicated this, but the FBI.

“No, no sir this is not Wikileaks,” said Roberts before mentioning the FBI, and the allegation that Kennedy tried to influence the investigation.

“This makes no sense to me at all. This sounds like late in the campaign tricks that are meaningless,” replied Dean.

Roberts then said that Trump would be likely to bring this up during the third and final debate, asking (again) Dean how the Clinton campaign would respond. Dean said that Clinton should just keep doing what she’s doing with her past scandals, which is to deny, deny, and deny some more. Granted, some accusation, like Vince Foster’s suicide, is a bit far-fetched, but there is some glaring ethical issues concerning the sale of Uranium One to the Russian state corporation Rosatom, which the Committee on Foreign Investment signed off on; Clinton is one of the principals on that committee.

To make a long story short, the chairman of Uranium One used his own family charity to donate more that $2 million to the Clinton Foundation, while a bank selling Uranium One futures paid Bill Clinton $500,000 for a paid speech, while this sale was in negotiations. The approval of the sale made the Russians one of the world’s largest uranium producers; Uranium One had mining interests in the U.S.

Dean was just not prepared for this interview, which showed when he seemed to think that the FBI notes were Wikileaks documents. Any allegation of quid pro quo, especially with the Clintons, whether it’s true or not, is news. The fact that this was even discussed (based on these notes) is unsettling. Moreover, Dean, or any Democrat, wouldn’t have said that these allegations are meaningless if a Republican were in the crosshairs.

Here's the relevant portion of that note,courtesy of The Washington Free Beacon/Politico:

In an exchange that included redacted names, the interview notes state that “[REDACTED] received a call from [REDACTED] of the International Operations Division (IOD) of the FBI, who ‘pressured’ him to change the classified email to unclassified. [REDACTED] indicated he had been contacted by PATRICK KENNEDY, Undersecretary of State, who had asked his assistance in altering the email’s classification in exchange for a ‘quid pro quo.’”

Odd News: Kyrgyzstan Has Misplaced Its Constitution

Some weird news for your Friday afternoon: the country of Kyrgyzstan seemingly has no idea as to where the physical copy of its constitution is located. In what appears to be a classic case of multiple parties saying, "wait, I thought you had it," nobody has any clue about where the original constitution is.

Kyrgyzstan wrote its constitution in June 2010, and realized it was missing on October 19. According to The Independent, some have suggested that this whole situation is an elaborate ruse to distract people from the current political mess in the country.

Justice Minister Jyldyz Mambetalieva said her office had a copy of the 2010 constitution, but that the original is held by the presidential administration.

Moldakun Abdyldayev, the presidential administration’s liaison to parliament, contradicted her.

He said: “We assumed that it was with the Justice Ministry. Now the minister is confirming that there is no original. That raises the question: where is the original?”

There is also the possibility that there isn't a master copy of the constitution. The text of the document was published in newspapers throughout Kyrgyzstan and was the subject of a referendum, so at least there's some sort of record as to the country's governing document.

And no, Nic Cage is not believed to be a suspect in the document's disappearance.

ISIS Launches Counter-Offensive in the Iraqi City of Kirkuk

Early on Friday morning, ISIS launched a major counter-offensive on the city of Kirkuk in retaliation for Iraqi and Kurdish forces assault around Mosul that started earlier this week in Iraq.

The Islamic State's assault on Kirkuk, which lies in an oil- producing region, killed 18 members of the security forces and workers at a power station outside the city, including two Iranians, according to Reuters.

Hours after the initial assault, witnesses in Kirkuk said gunfire and explosions could still be heard and ISIS fighters were walking through the downtown district.

District police chief Brig Gen Sarhad Qadir said that suicide bombers had attacked three police buildings and the headquarters of a political party.

"All of the militants who attacked the police emergency building and the old building of the Kirkuk police directorate have been killed but a number of other militants are still in Dumez district," he said.

ISIS also cut the road between the city and the power station 20 miles to the north.

"Because of the ongoing Mosul offensive, they may want to create a situation where forces would be withdrawn from there and the focus shifted to Kirkuk," Mr Karim told Kurdish news agency Rudaw.  "Also because they are being defeated in Mosul, they want to boost their morale with these kinds of actions."

Watch Live: Trump Speaks in Johnstown

Clinton Campaign: Let's Not Overdo the Tributes to "The Four Guys" Killed in Benghazi

WikiLeaks released another batch of Clinton Campaign Chair John Podesta's emails on Thursday. If you search "Benghazi," you'll find her staff editing a draft of her opening statement to the Select Committee on Benghazi hearing almost a year ago today. Her staff is mostly pleased with the wording, but they have a few issues with it. In particular, Clinton's political consultant Mandy Grunwald questions why Clinton is mentioning the "four guys" who were killed on the night of the raid. To do so, Grunwald worried, may be "overdoing" it.

Those four brave men, in case you didn't know, are Ambassador Chris Stevens, Sean Smith, Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods. Clinton ultimately kept it in the final version of her opening statement.

In another message in the email chain, one other staffer casually talks about the number of Americans killed by while serving in their diplomatic posts overseas.

Can we get some more numbers into the early “diplomacy is dangerous” discussion? Sixty-six American diplomatic personnel and over a hundred contractors and locally employed staff killed since the 1970’s (or whatever the numbers are). I recognize we have some numbers on page 3 (Beirut bombing, 1998 attacks).

Yeah, whatever they are.

Her team also went back and forth trying to decide whether or not to use the line about "the backs of dead Americans," wondering if they should keep it in to stir moral outrage.

Ben Stein Brings “Bueller” Back in Awesome New GOP Ad

Ben Stein has reprised his role as Ferris Bueller’s mundane economics teacher in a new Iowa ad attacking Chuck Grassley’s Democratic challenger, Patty Judge.

In the short clip, Stein, who is a longtime Republican, repeatedly calls out “Judge” to no avail. The ad points out how Judge has basically been a no-show to her responsibilities. This was contrasted to Grassley’s high attendance record.

The ad could not be more hilarious. Here’s to hoping it gives Grassley another term in the U.S. Senate.

Several Major Websites Go Down In DDOS Attack

On Friday, many popular sites on the internet--Spotify, Twitter, Reddit, Amazon, and dozens of others--were temporarily shut down due to a massive distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack on servers hosted by Dyn, a host utilized by many major websites.

Domain Name Servers (DNS) act as the Internet’s phone book. Basically, they facilitate your request to go to a certain webpage and make sure you are taken to the right place. If the DNS provider that handles requests for Twitter is down, well, good luck getting to Twitter. Some websites are coming back for some users, but it doesn’t look like the problem is fully resolved.

Dyn posted this update on its website: “Starting at 11:10 UTC on October 21th-Friday 2016 we began monitoring and mitigating a DDoS attack against our Dyn Managed DNS infrastructure. Some customers may experience increased DNS query latency and delayed zone propagation during this time. Updates will be posted as information becomes available.”

The attack was first reported before 9:00 a.m. ET, and was resolved around 9:45 a.m. ET. It is unknown who--or what--was behind the attack.

Smart Power: Cash-Flush Iran Steps Up Funding to Radical Group Attacking US Ships

Behold, the latest machinations of our newly-enriched "peace partners" or whatever, who -- as President Obama himself anticipated -- have been putting their sanctions relief windfall from the nuclear agreement to prompt use, stepping up support to terrorists and anti-American militias. Their world-leading state sponsorship of terrorism is "undiminished" since the Obama administration bypassed Congress and struck an agreement with the Al Qaeda-harboring regime, under which Tehran receives tens of billions of dollars in exchange for a temporary, loophole-filled pause of their previously-illegal nuclear program.  Contra Tim Kaine, the agreement does not even remotely "end" Iran's nuclear ambitions.  Just the opposite, in fact.  So with their coffers replenished, Iran is doing what Iran does -- via Reuters:

Iran has stepped up weapons transfers to the Houthis, the militia fighting the Saudi-backed government in Yemen, U.S., Western and Iranian officials tell Reuters, a development that threatens to prolong and intensify the 19-month-old war. The increased pace of transfers in recent months, which officials said include missiles and small arms, could exacerbate a security headache for the United States, which last week struck Houthi targets with cruise missiles in retaliation for failed missile attacks on a U.S. Navy destroyer. Much of the recent smuggling activity has been through Oman, which neighbors Yemen, including via overland routes that take advantage of porous borders between the two countries, the officials said...That raises a further quandary for Washington, which views the tiny Gulf state as a strategic interlocutor and ally in the conflict-ridden region. A senior U.S. administration official said that Washington had informed Oman of its concerns, without specifying when...The Iran-allied Houthis gained a trove of weapons when whole divisions allied to former Yemen President Ali Abdullah Saleh sided with them at the start of the war last year. But Saudi Arabia and Yemen’s exiled government say they also receive substantial amounts of weapons and ammunition from Iran. Tehran views the Houthis as the legitimate authority in Yemen, but denies it supplies them with weapons.

Yemen, you may recall, was touted by Obama as a success story in the region. Oops.  As the Reuters story mentions, not only are the Iranians increasing their global meddling, they're arming a group that is firing missiles  at American ships, prompting retaliatory strikes.  If you're keeping track of this brilliant 'smart power' diplomatic stroke, the US government forked over billions to a known sponsor of terror, which then...sponsored terror, transferring weapons to a militia that is now attacking American warships.  Take a bow, Mr. President.  And Madame Secretary, who laid the groundwork for the reckless nuclear accord -- which she still supports, despite a broad bipartisan consensus against it.  Meanwhile, Iran continues to flex its muscles in Iraq, helping to fill the power vacuum left over by the Obama/Clinton foolishly hasty, politically-motivated withdrawal from that country (where Iranian bombs have killed hundreds of US servicemen, it must be noted).  Things have gotten so bad with ISIS that Obama has quietly redeployed thousands of Americans to Iraq, though the administration insists they are in a non-combat role.  Tell that to the US soldier who was killed by an enemy IED just this week near Mosul.  And in case you missed Cortney's post earlier in the week, the Iranian government is demanding more ransom payments in exchange for the release of additional US hostages, more of whom Iran has inevitably seized since the last cash-for-hostages scheme.  The Washington Post's editorial board took notice of Iran's conduct vis-a-vis hostage-taking and ransom-demanding, scolding the Obama administration:

More and bitter evidence of [enduring tensions] came Tuesday, when Tehran announced that two American citizens and a permanent U.S. resident had been sentenced to 10 years in prison on charges of “cooperating with the hostile U.S. government.” ... The government of Hassan Rouhani, which negotiated the nuclear deal with the Obama administration, is often portrayed as opposed to this de facto hostage-taking. If so, the government appears powerless to prevent it. Instead, officials complain about the relatively slow return of Western investment and trade following the lifting of United Nations sanctions, even as some of those who promote the opening are unjustly imprisoned. Iranian foreign policy, too, remains unchanged. The regime has dispatched thousands of fighters to Syria to prop up the regime of Bashar al-Assad and is using Shiite militias to extend its influence across Iraq. It is encouraging Russia’s new bid for influence in the Middle East while doing its best to drive out the United States...Though it was officially part of a separate claims settlement, the Obama administration’s delivery of $400 million in cash to the Iranian regime at the time of the release of Mr. Rezaian and other prisoners may have whetted the appetites of Tehran’s jailers.

"May have."  Cute.  Iran is a malignant actor running roughshod over a weak American president who is obsessed with protecting the legacy of the terrible nuclear deal he struck, at virtually any cost. His administration paid one massive ransom to Iran to buy back some imprisoned Americans (the "official" story is a laughable pretext), and now -- surprise! -- Tehran is back at that well, asking for more. And why wouldn't they? Obama has offered concession after concession, even after the lopsided accord was finalized -- including lifting sanctions on key banks closely tied to Iran's illegal ballistic missile program. The regime is getting everything it wants, including, it seems, the ability to purchase new airplanes from US companies. A comprehensive, humiliating, dangerous rout.  And by the way, Mr. President:  No, Israel does not support the Iran deal.

Former RNC Chair Isn't Voting For Donald Trump--Or Hillary Clinton

Former RNC Chairman Michael Steele, who led the RNC from 2009 until 2011, will not be voting for Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton in the upcoming election. Steele said this at a dinner honoring Mother Jones on its 40th anniversary. Steele said that he thought Trump's campaign gave voice to a "racist underbelly" in the United States, and thus, he won't be supporting it.

Steele also said the debates made him feel physically ill.

From BuzzFeed:

“I will not be voting for Clinton,” Steele told a dinner in honor of the 40th anniversary of the progressive magazine Mother Jones in San Francisco Friday. “I will not be voting for Trump either.”

Steele, a former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland, said that Trump has “captured that racist underbelly, that frustration, that angry underbelly of American life and gave voice to that.”

“I was damn near puking during the debates,” Steele said, adding that he believes Trump only represents 30% of the Republican Party.

Current RNC Chair Reince Priebus has continued to support Donald Trump as Election Day grows near.

Republican Senator Wants to Get on With SCOTUS Nomination Before It's Too Late

Sensing a Hillary Clinton presidency is inevitable at this point, Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) is urging his colleagues to forward the Supreme Court nomination process before she enters the White House. President Obama's choice in Merrick Garland would be far better than any liberal justice Clinton requests, he argues.

"I said if we were in a position like we were in in '96 and we pretty much knew the outcome that we ought to move forward. But I think we passed that awhile ago," Flake said. "If Hillary Clinton is president-elect then we should move forward with hearings in the lame duck. That's what I'm encouraging my colleagues to do."

Yet, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is refusing to hold a vote. 

The Supreme Court is a significant factor in this year’s election. It was the very first thing the presidential nominees discussed at the debate in Las Vegas this week. Their visions for the court could not be more opposite. Donald Trump talked about appointing pro-life justices who will rule through a conservative bent, while Hillary Clinton spoke of the need to defend Roe v. Wade.

While Garland is not exactly a conservative hero (gun rights activists has some serious concerns) he is more middle-of-the-road than other potential candidates expected to be appointed by a Democrat. Should the GOP just take their chances with him?

Poll: Paul Ryan's Approval Collapses, More GOP Voters Say Trump Best Represents Their View Of The Party

Justin wrote about the hostile reception to Speaker Of The House Paul Ryan from Trump supporters at a rally in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Chants of “Paul Ryan sucks” were shouted, but is this an isolated incident? That is, is this just a representation of Trump supporters from the local area? No—not really. The latest polling shows that support for Ryan has collapsed, sinking 28 points…in a week. The YouGov poll had some interesting points concerning Ryan, Trump, and the brewing tensions that seem bound to erupt in civil war once this election is over.

Allahpundit noted that Ryan is experiencing the Ted Cruz treatment from his own side by refusing to campaign with Trump, though he hasn’t yanked his endorsement, which rightfully leaves some people wondering why this late in the game would anyone just stop supporting Trump. For starters, the Access Hollywood tape isn’t a deal breaker with many Republican voters, but it is one with almost a quarter of independents, who Trump needs to win over in order to win this election. Another interesting find in the crosstabs about Ryan is that most Republicans, despite their increasing dislike of him, view him as the leader of the GOP, not Trump:

You would expect a majority of Republicans to say Trump when we’re a month out from Election Day. Nope — it’s Ryan, narrowly, which reflects either the deep ideological ambivalence on the right to the nominee or a growing resignation that Trump’s going to lose and Ryan will be the leader of the party the day after. Interestingly, pluralities of Dems and independents also say Ryan, not Trump, is the leader of the party. That’s especially odd among Democrats since you’d think they’d want to spread the idea that the very unpopular Trump is the face of the GOP, not the mildly unpopular Ryan. Maybe that’s the result of Hillary Clinton having spent the last three months telling the country that Trump doesn’t represent mainstream Republicans, a talking point that’s driven other Democrats nuts since it lets Republicans downballot off the hook for Trump’s worst excesses. If the GOP hangs onto the Senate, that’ll partly explain why.

Well, just a second, how can it be that Ryan is viewed as the leader of the GOP, but most Republicans think that Trump’s views best represent their own vision of the party? In fact, a new Bloomberg poll had Gov. Mike Pence as the person GOP voters want to see as the face of the party, followed by Trump, and then Sen. Ted Cruz. Ryan is fourth on that list:

When asked in the latest Bloomberg Politics poll who should be the face of the party nationally in the event of a Hillary Clinton victory, likely voters who are or lean Republican splintered down a list of five options.

A plurality, 27 percent, picked vice presidential nominee Mike Pence. Trump got 24 percent, ahead of Texas Senator Ted Cruz at 19 percent, House Speaker Paul Ryan at 15 percent, and Ohio Governor John Kasich at 10 percent.


When asked which leader better represents their view what the Republican Party should stand for, 51 percent of likely voters who are or lean Republican picked Trump, while 33 percent picked Ryan and 15 percent said they weren’t sure.

What is clear in these data is that a large segment of Trump supporters are all-in with the candidate. They see him as capable of delivering on the promise of a greater nation. That said, just 38 percent of them say they will stay loyal and follow his future endeavors if he does not win,” said pollster J. Ann Selzer, who oversaw the survey ahead of the final debate Wednesday. “If he were to lose, our data suggest his standing would diminish.”

Trump’s sliding popularity among party faithful may be another sign that his leadership would be less than welcome, especially since it already pales in comparison to the last nominee.

In the latest Bloomberg Politics poll, Trump’s favorability rating was 76 percent among likely voters who are or lean Republican, down from 81 percent in late September. Mitt Romney, the Republican Party’s last nominee, was seen favorably by 91 percent in a Bloomberg poll in September 2012.

Still, I doubt that the Trump wing of the GOP will disband overnight. If Trump should lose, the Never Trump wing and the establishment will begin with the “I told you so” antics, which is ridiculous. We don’t need that post-November 8th. What the party needs is a long, detailed, and painful discussion on reconstruction—and the Trump crowd will have to be part of it. On one hand, Paul Ryan is sinking in favorability, but is viewed as the leader of the party. Trump appears to be sinking in favorability, though his is much higher than Ryan’s, but is not considered the leader of the GOP. Yet, a majority of Republican voters feels that he best represents their views of the party. It’s a rather tribal look at the party, one that seems primed to see hostilities break out, especially if Trump loses in November.

The Al Smith Dinner Highlights

If you watched the Al Smith Dinner Thursday night, you would have seen a night of fun laughs and witty humor. However, some of the jokes got a bit awkward for Clinton and Trump - who have run a pretty rough campaign thus far.

Here are some of the highlights from the two candidates:

Trump: “And even tonight, with all of the heated back and forth, between my opponent and me at the debate last night, we have proven that we can actually be civil to each other. In fact, just before taking the dais, Hillary accidentally bumped into me and she very civilly said, ‘Pardon me.’ And I very politely replied, ‘Let me talk to you about that after I get into office.’”

Trump: "You know, last night, I called Hillary a 'nasty woman,' but this stuff is all relative. After listening to Hillary rattle on and on and on, I don’t think so badly of Rosie O’Donnell anymore. In fact, I’m actually starting to like Rosie a lot.”

Trump: “You know, the president told me to stop whining, but I really have to say, the media is even more biased this year than ever before — ever. You want the proof? Michelle Obama gives a speech and everyone loves it — it’s fantastic. They think she’s absolutely great. My wife, Melania, gives the exact same speech — and people get on her case.And I don’t get it. I don’t know why.”

Clinton: “It’s a special honor to be here with Your Eminence. Now I know, Your Eminence, you were criticized for inviting both Donald and me here tonight, and you responded by saying “If I only sat down with those who were saints, I’d be taking all my meals alone. Now, just to be clear, I think the Cardinal is saying I’m not eligible for sainthood. But getting through these three debates with Donald has to count as a miracle.”

Clinton: “People look at the Statue of Liberty and they see a proud symbol of our history as a nation of immigrants, a beacon of hope for people around the world. Donald looks at the Statue of Liberty and sees a ‘four.’ Maybe a ‘five’ if she loses the torch and tablet and changes her hair. You know, come to think of it, you know what would be a good number for a woman? Forty-five.”

Clinton: “Now, you notice there is no teleprompter here tonight, which is probably smart, because maybe you saw Donald dismantle his prompter the other day. And I get that. They’re hard to keep up with, and I’m sure it’s even harder when you’re translating from the original Russian.”

Clinton:” It is great, also, to see Mayor Bloomberg here. It’s a shame he’s not speaking tonight. I’m curious to hear what a billionaire has to say.”

Watch Live: Donald Trump Speaks in Fletcher