- CBP Commissioner: Border is ‘more secure and more safe’
- Obama dispatches researchers to border to check on National Guard
- Dutch receiving Malaysia plane bodies irked at Putin’s daughter in Holland
- Algerian airplane goes missing over Mali: ‘Emergency plan’ launched
- Colorado judge strikes voter-backed gay marriage ban, but issues stay
- Brooklyn Bridge flag-swapping suspects identified by nickname
- Christian woman in Sudan spared for apostasy flies to Italy
- Iraq: 60 dead in attack on prisoner convoy
- Marco Rubio: U.S. at social, moral crossroads
- ‘We’re coming for you, Barack Obama’: Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL
The Water Cooler is written by Washington Times staffers.
Buzz and intense fundraising have kept New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on the presidential hopeful radar; he enjoys stable favorability numbers and a campaign war chest that now tops $9 million, with fundraising apparatus now set up in 50 states. "He's the hottest property in American politics and the most compelling personality thestate has produced since Tony Soprano. Polls say he is now the front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination," says Tom Moran, a columnist for the New Jersey Star-Ledger. But Mr. Christie is overrated, he observes, noting that although the governor is a deft politician and deal maker, New Jersey's economy is a mess, property taxes are up, poverty and crime levels are rising while the state's credit rating is dropping. Mr. Moran predicts that his successor could inherit "a bigger mess" than he did. "Christie is a better politician than he is a governor, that his fame is ...
Soon to arrive in the nation's capital: the Freethought Equality Fund PAC, the creation of the Center for Humanist Activism. Organizers say the new political action committee is being formed specifically to support candidates who are willing to advocate for the "equal rights of nonbelievers." They make their case known at the National Press Club on Wednesday. Their goal, according to national coordinator Bishop McNeil: "The mission of the Freethought Equality Fund PAC is to change the face of American politics by providing nontheist Americans the opportunity to make their voices heard in the political process like never before by getting involved in the electoral process supporting candidates for public office at all levels of government."
Russia President Vladimir Putin's foray into journalism is still drawing the ire of American lawmakers. Just a sampling of what's out there: "Putin's NYT op-ed is an insult to the intelligence of every American." - Sen. John McCain, Arizona Republican, in a tweet following Mr. Putin's contribution to The New York Times that cautions the U.S. not to consider itself "exceptional" and to "avoid force" in Syria. "Mr. Putin worries that it is 'extremely dangerous' for President Obama to encourage Americans to see themselves as exceptional. His concern is well placed. Historically it has not boded well for autocrats when Americans are clearly focused on the values and principles that have made our nation great." - Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican, reacting to the same op-ed. "History teaches us that a strong and engaged America is a source of good in the world." - Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida Republican, on ...
In polite circles, they're called "Libertarian leaning" Republicans who are borrowing a few pages from the Libertarian Party playbook, primarily to widen the voter appeal of the Grand Old Party as 2014 and 2016 approach. Now there are some numbers on it. A FreedomWorks poll released Wednesday reveals "fiscal issues and the role of government take top priority across the GOP voter base." The findings note that "big-tent libertarian values within the Republican Party and the American voter population at large are at the highest level in a decade." The survey found that 41 percent of Republicans say they have such values. The greater concern is whether social conservatives and the Libertarian leaners can get along - but that's another story. Meanwhile, on the laundry list of voter concerns, the pollsters says that voters fret about increasing government power - including the U.S. engagement in overseas conflicts, citizen surveillance, the ...
Not too long ago ago, the nation was obsessed with the perils of the fiscal cliff. Lawmakers vowed to tangle with the federal debt and right the economy. Now Congress faces another budget battle at month's end, and the dire prospect of a government shut down should funds actually run out. So let's solve the Syria crisis, says Fox Business Network's Washington correspondent Rich Edson. It's time for clarity, and the real business at hand, he tells The Watercooler. "This debate lacks a concise, compelling argument from the President of the United States. Absent that, there's a possibility a bipartisan majority rejects granting the administration the authority it says it already has. Beyond the domestic politics and international consequences, failure to encourage a quick congressional resolution on Syria further delays the next round of budget negotiations," Mr. Edson explains. Here's the situation. "Government discretionary spending authority expires with the end ...
Ronald Reagan still gets much recognition for his finesse in the public arena. Consider that Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, Navy Chief of Operations Adm. Jonathan W. Greenert plus Sens. Carl Levin, Michigan Democrat, and Kelly Ayotte, New Hampshire Republican, are among the 30 luminaries who will attend "Building Peace Through Strength Through 2025" at the Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif., in mid-November. "More than ever, before we are learning the true value of peace through strength," declares Rep. Howard P. "Buck" McKeon, California Republican and chairman of the House Armed Services Committee; he also heads up the steering committee for this event. Among many items on the agenda: the Asia "rebalance," Pentagon management during wartime and sequestration, and caring for wounded warriors. "My husband worked every day of our eight years in Washington to ensure that our country was ...
Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper has a clear reply for a new report from TV Globo, a Brazilian TV network, claiming the National Security Agency monitored computer systems at Google Inc., Petroleo Brasileiro SA, Brazil's state-owned energy company. French diplomats were also on the list. The network based its claims on training documents from the U.S. clandestine agency, leaked by Edward Snowden. The story was co-authored by Guardain reporter Glenn Greenwald and TV Globo Reporter Sonia Bridi. Is it economic espionage? "It is not a secret that the Intelligence Community collects information about economic and financial matters, and terrorist financing," Mr. Clapper said in a statement issued Sunday night. "We collect this information for many important reasons: for one, it could provide the United States and our allies early warning of international financial crises which could negatively impact the global economy. It also could provide insight into other ...
'Viciously negative' news coverage of Virginia Republican Ken Cuccinelli's campaign yields him only four positive stories in 12 weeks
One political bout looms large on the radar at the moment: the Virginia governor's race between former Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe - a longtime friend and associate of Bill and Hillary Clinton - and Republican Ken Cuccinelli, currently the state's attorney general. Mr. McAuliffe has won the media's protection, apparently. A new study of major newspapers in the state finds the GOP candidate got rough treatment from the press compared to his Democratic counterpart: Mr. Cuccinelli earned just four positive stories vs. 95 negative ones, a whopping 24-to-1 margin. So says a new analysis by the Media Research Center which reviewed 405 news stories, editorials and columns that appeared June 12 through August 31. "Our study found that Cuccinelli has received far more negative coverage than his rival, and only Cuccinelli has been cast by the newspapers as an ideological candidate," says Rich Noyes, who directed the research. ...
A suicide prevention expert has called for the term "homicide bomber" to replace the widely used "suicide bomber", claiming that those who kill themselves while murdering others have few similarities to actual suicide victims. So says Dr. Robert Goldney, a psychiatry professor at the University of Adelaide in Australia, who is, incidentally, an internationally regarded suicide expert and author. "Past studies have generally shown that there is little in common between so-called 'suicide bombers' and those who die by suicide, using 'suicide' in its clinically accepted sense," he says. "From the point of view of experienced clinical psychiatrists, suicide bombers have a range of characteristics that are completely different to those of the majority of suicide victims." Typical feelings of hopelessness, unbearable psychic pain combined with self-absorption and few options are common among those who are suicidal. Not so among those who commit terrorist acts, Dr. Goldney says, noting "Mental ...
The public has been confused about the identity of "Syrian rebels" - who could receive arms and training from the U.S. is the very near future. One conservative watchdog group blames this confusion on broadcasters. "The United States is poised to fire missiles at Syria in response to chemical attacks on Syrian civilians. But the assault will also pit the U.S. against one side of the civil war and aid the other side, which includes al Qaeda," says Dan Gainor, vice president for business and culture at the Media Research Center. "Broadcast news outlets are clearly aware of the Islamic terror group's role in Syria, but rarely report it. Nearly 94 percent of all Syria stories since the gas attacks have made no mention of al Qaeda whatsoever," Mr. Gainor continues. "It's not like the networks haven’t had time. Since the gas attack on Aug. 21 in Ghoutta, Syria, ABC, ...
Yes, it's a matter of Moore - and less of Moore. Conservative author Dinesh D'Souza, one of the driving forces behind last year's surprise blockbuster documentary "2016: Obama's America", has some news. He reveals that earlier this summer, the film's esteemed producer Gerald Molen protested the treatment of the production by the Academy Awards nomination committee, which denied it an Oscar nomination, though it was one of the highest grossing political documentaries of all time. Mr. Molen, who won a best picture Oscar himself for "Schindler's List", pointed out to the committee that the nominations board was "led by three well-known progressives, notably that uber-liberal, Michael Moore," Mr. D'Souza writes at his personal website. "I was most gratified to learn that in their recent elections, academy voters decided to oust Moore from his position as a decider of which documentaries should make the cut for Oscar contention. This is a ...
The official description is this: "annual release of information related to orders issued to telecom providers under national security authorities." And here are the details. "In June, President Obama directed the Intelligence Community (IC) to declassify and make public as much information as possible about certain sensitive U.S. Government surveillance programs while being mindful of the need to protect sensitive classified intelligence and national security," says Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper in a statement issued Thursday night. "Consistent with this directive and in the interest of increased transparency, the DNI has determined, with the concurrence of the IC, that going forward the IC will publicly release, on an annual basis, aggregate information concerning compulsory legal process under certain national security authorities," he notes. So what's coming? Content emerges from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). "For each of the following categories of national security authorities, the IC will ...
He's seen a lot of wars, and the making of wars, that's for sure. Donald Rumsfeld, 81, is a U.S. Navy veteran, was Secretary of Defense twice, and has served in public office in one capacity or another since 1963. And here's what he thinks about Syria as the White House wrestles with a protocol, a response and a productive solution. "The fundamental problem we've got - the United States - is that this administration has been in a withdrawal mode, in an apology mode," Mr. Rumsfeld told the Fox Business Network. "And therefore, that vacuum we've created is being filled by people who don't have our values or our interests. And that gives China and Russia an opportunity to do things that are, fundamentally, against what we, as a country, and the American people would prefer to have happen," he noted. Eight days after the chemical attack on Syrian ...
"Boots on the ground" may be a favorite phrase among journalists covering civil unrest in Syria. But it's the least favorite among war weary Americans who do not support sending U.S. troops into Syria. Only 4 percent would support a ground invasion, according to a new Reuters/Ipsos poll. The numbers: 60 percent of Americans say the U.S. should not intervene in Syria's civil war. 47 percent oppose sending arms to Syrian rebels; 27 percent support the idea. 46 percent would oppose U.S. intervention in Syria even if use of chemical weapons is proven; 25 percent would support intervention under those circumstances. 12 percent would support U.S. airstrikes to help the rebels. 11 percent would support a no-fly zone over Syria to ground its air force. 9 percent would support funding a multinational invasion of Syria. 9 percent say President Obama should "act" on the Syrian situation. 4 percent support invading ...
It's a conservative political action committee with one very aggressive purpose: "to ensure Hillary Clinton never becomes President of the United States," the organizers say. They insist that "the American way of life is under attack and Hillary Clinton is the liberal standard-bearer of the next generation of liberal creep on our Constitutional rights." Stop Hillary PAC has won its first congressional endorsement from Rep. Steve Stockman, a spirited Texas Republican who does not shy away from the public arena himself. The organizers predict it is the first of numerous endorsements, also noting that they've already raised "hundreds of thousands of dollars" and accrued thousands of signatures supporting their efforts. "I've joined with Stop Hillary PAC to gather millions of petition signatures to pressure Congress into holding full and open hearings on the Benghazi tragedy. I've filed a discharge petition with the House of Representatives forcing an up or down ...
The Robbins Report
- Sarah Palin backs tea party challenger in Tennessee Senate race
- Ted Cruz suggests flight ban is boycott of Israel
- New Democratic caucus will pressure GOP governors to expand Medicaid
- Texas Rep. Cuellar: No summer break until we deal with border crisis
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- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- Algerian airplane goes missing over Mali: 'Emergency plan' launched
- Despite rhetoric, gun prosecutions plummet under Obama
- House task force to recommend National Guard on border, faster deportations
- Obama orders Pentagon advisers to Ukraine
- Obama says public not familiar enough with issues
- CROWLEY: The good-time president
- Hamas rejects Kerry's call for cease-fire; Hezbollah in Syria could join fight against Israel
- NAPOLITANO: What if our democracy is a fraud?
- EDITORIAL: Poor Hillary, rock-star wannabe