Monday, February 6, 2017

5 things you need to know now
President Donald Trump falsely accused the media of declining to report terror attacks, particularly those in Europe, during a speech Monday to the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida. "It's gotten to a point where it's not even being reported. And in many cases, the very, very dishonest press doesn't want to report it. They have their reasons, and you understand that," Trump said, without elaborating. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer later backed off Trump's statement, clarifying that Trump meant the attacks were "under-reported," as opposed to not reported at all. A White House official later released a list of 78 attacks that took place between 2014 and 2016, saying "most" did not "receive adequate attention from Western media sources." The list included the 2016 shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando and the 2015 massacre in San Bernardino.
Source: BuzzFeed News, The Hill
On Monday evening, the Department of Justice filed a 15-page brief defending President Trump's executive order on immigration, and moments later, it was announced the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals will hear a challenge to his travel ban tomorrow. Last week, a federal judge temporarily suspended parts of the travel ban against people from seven Muslim-majority countries, and on Tuesday, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals will listen to oral arguments during a hearing conducted by telephone at 6 p.m. ET to decide the fate of the restraining order. The attorneys general in Washington and Minnesota have both challenged Trump's executive order, and say if the temporary suspension is lifted, "chaos" will ensue at airports across the United States.
Source: CNN, Los Angeles Times
Senate Democrats plan to hold the floor for 24 hours to protest the nomination of Betsy DeVos, President Trump's pick for education secretary. At the start of the all-night debate Monday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) declared DeVos the "least qualified nominee in a historically unqualified Cabinet," and Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) promised Democrats will do "everything we can to persuade just one more Republican to join us." Already, Republican Sens. Susan Collins (Maine) and Lisa Murkowswki (Alaska) have said they will oppose DeVos, which may make it necessary for Vice President Mike Pence to step in to cast a tie-breaking vote in DeVos' favor. If another Republican decides to vote against DeVos, however, she will not be confirmed. The Democrats' marathon session is slated to last until noon Tuesday, at which point the Senate will hold a final vote on DeVos' confirmation.
Source: CNN, Politico
President Trump's pick for Labor Secretary, Andrew Puzder, admitted in a statement on Monday that he once hired an undocumented immigrant to work for his family. "My wife and I employed a housekeeper for a few years, during which I was unaware that she was not legally permitted to work in the U.S.," Puzder, the chief executive of CKE Restaurants, said. "When I learned of her status, we immediately ended her employment and offered her assistance in getting legal status. We have fully paid back taxes to the IRS and the state of California and submitted all required paperwork." Lamar Alexander, the Republican Senator from Tennessee and chairman of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, said that because Puzder "voluntarily corrected" his error, he should not be disqualified from being a Cabinet secretary. Similar revelations from Zoe Baird and Kimba Wood, former President Bill Clinton's picks for attorney general in 1993, sank their nominations.
Source: CNN

German weekly newsmagazine Der Spiegel rallied Europe to form an "alliance" against President Trump in its latest editorial published online Sunday. In the piece, Der Spiegel's online publisher Klaus Brinkb√§umer argued that it is "absolutely necessary" for Germany to lead Europe in growing "stronger" and planning "its political and economic defenses" against "America's dangerous president." Calling Trump both a "pathological liar" and a "racist," Brinkb√§umer suggested Trump is "attempting a coup from the top; he wants to establish an illiberal democracy, or worse; he wants to undermine the balance of power." "This is not a threat that will somehow resolve itself," the editorial reads. "It is high time that we stand up for what is important." Last week, Der Spiegel featured on its cover an image of Trump violently beheading Lady Liberty.

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