Category Archives: Presidential Campaign 2016

Obama Levels Sanctions at Russia in Response to Interfering in Election, Harassing Diplomats

Russian President Vladimir Putin, at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi. The US has evidence that Putin was directly involved in orchestrating cyber attacks and information dissemination intended to tilt the US election toward Donald Trump’s victory. Trump has dismissed the unified analysis of more than a dozen US intelligence agencies and has indicated he would be a close ally of Putin or as Hillary Clinton put it during the campaign, “Putin’s Puppet.”© 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Russian President Vladimir Putin, at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi. The US has evidence that Putin was directly involved in orchestrating cyber attacks and information dissemination intended to tilt the US election toward Donald Trump’s victory. Trump has dismissed the unified analysis of more than a dozen US intelligence agencies and has indicated he would be a close ally of Putin or as Hillary Clinton put it during the campaign, “Putin’s Puppet.”© 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

By Karen Rubin, News & Photo Features

Today, President Obama authorized a number of actions in response to the Russian government’s aggressive harassment of U.S. officials and cyber operations aimed at the U.S. election in 2016.  “Russia’s cyber activities were intended to influence the election, erode faith in U.S. democratic institutions, sow doubt about the integrity of our electoral process, and undermine confidence in the institutions of the U.S. government.  These actions are unacceptable and will not be tolerated,” the White House stated.

“Today, I have ordered a number of actions in response to the Russian government’s aggressive harassment of U.S. officials and cyber operations aimed at the U.S. election,” President Obama stated . These actions follow repeated private and public warnings that we have issued to the Russian government, and are a necessary and appropriate response to efforts to harm U.S. interests in violation of established international norms of behavior.

“All Americans should be alarmed by Russia’s actions. In October, my Administration publicized our assessment that Russia took actions intended to interfere with the U.S. election process.  These data theft and disclosure activities could only have been directed by the highest levels of the Russian government. Moreover, our diplomats have experienced an unacceptable level of harassment in Moscow by Russian security services and police over the last year.  Such activities have consequences.  Today, I have ordered a number of actions in response.”

The President issued an executive order that expands upon his authority to respond to certain cyber activity that seeks to interfere with or undermine our election processes and institutions, or those of our allies or partners.

Using this new authority, Obama sanctioned nine entities and individuals:  the GRU and the FSB, two Russian intelligence services; four individual officers of the GRU; and three companies that provided material support to the GRU’s cyber operations.  In addition, the Secretary of the Treasury is designating two Russian individuals for using cyber-enabled means to cause misappropriation of funds and personal identifying information.  The State Department is also shutting down two Russian compounds, in Maryland and New York, that the government charges were being used by Russian personnel for intelligence-related purposes. Also, the State Department is declaring “persona non grata” 35 Russian intelligence operatives who will have to leave the US within 72 hours.

Finally, the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are releasing declassified technical information on Russian civilian and military intelligence service cyber activity –including the codes and IP addresses – to help network defenders in the United States and abroad identify, detect, and disrupt Russia’s global campaign of malicious cyber activities.

“These actions are not the sum total of our response to Russia’s aggressive activities,” the President added. “We will continue to take a variety of actions at a time and place of our choosing, some of which will not be publicized. In addition to holding Russia accountable for what it has done, the United States and friends and allies around the world must work together to oppose Russia’s efforts to undermine established international norms of behavior, and interfere with democratic governance. To that end, my Administration will be providing a report to Congress in the coming days about Russia’s efforts to interfere in our election, as well as malicious cyber activity related to our election cycle in previous elections.”

As for the timeline, senior administration officials, answering journalists’ questions, stated:

“Our first priority was publicly disclosing the information – it was most important to make public what we knew – and we did that October 7. That was a unique if not unprecedented step to come out with the common view of US intelligence agencies that a foreign power was influencing our election. We also wanted to give warning directly to the Russians, in public and in private, numerous times, that we knew what they were doing and were preparing a response. We wanted them to absorb that message and have that affect their behavior. We were concerned about securing the election – and there is no evidence that the Russians tampered with the vote. The priority for our cybersecurity efforts was to make sure our election was secure. But the material that had been hacked and was being released – it was not like that genie could be put back in the bottle. We were putting this together in context with [hacked] information being shared, publicly released and reported on by the news media. We wanted to do [respond] as methodically as possible: what we could do with sanctions, with diplomats, with the Joint Analysis Report (JAR), and preparing other elements.”

They added that it takes considerable time to put together a package of sanctions – you need to have the evidence sufficient to stand up in court to justify the actions.

“Sanctions packages are time consuming – establishing the basis, then finding the target list. JAR itself is complex procedure as putting together info we can share publicly that provides the best possible guidance about what we know – and response to harassment [of our diplomats] is something focusing on for some time.”

The incoming administration, under Donald Trump, has dismissed the allegations. Trump stated that “we should just get on with our lives,” and signaled he would undo sanctions leveled against Putin, including the sanctions that were put into place after Russia annexed Crimea and engaged in hostilities intended to overthrow the Ukrainian government.

But the Administration officials, pointing to “flagrant violation of norms” that have also seen in interference in our election as well as a level of harassment of US diplomats in Russia – one even being assaulted by a Russian police officer – along with malicious cyber attacks that have been leveled against critical American infrastructure and American companies. to a level that is unprecedented during in the post-Cold War era and has been developing over a period of years,” threaten national security and democratic regimes.

“There is no debate in the US administration: it is a fact that Russia interfered in our democratic election. We have established that to our satisfaction. We would never expect Russia to acknowledge what they did, don’t do it; still deny they are interfering in Ukraine. We say to journalists, look at what they say and what they do. This is a country that has intervened in sovereign country even though can see – bombed civilians, but they deny it. It is not a ‘he said/she said’ situation.  There are facts.”

“We have one president at a time. President Obama will execute the duties of his office until January 20. He’s acting on what he believes is in best interest of the United States.”

There are any number of actions that we’re taking that will [fall to next administration]. .When a new administration takes office, entirely in their judgment a to whether to continue the course we set in number of areas.

“But Russian actions have been sustained over an extended period of time, and by any definition, are against our national interest, not just the interests of this president – harassment of our diplomats is a direct threat of ability of US to conduct diplomacy. Interference with our election is a pattern we see in other western democracies, including some of our closest allies. Malicious cyber targeting of American critical infrastructure would be of concern to future administrations.

“We know from our own consultations this is of concern to American business, and we would expect future administrations to be concerned about the impact on the American economy of Russian cyber activity.  We are taking these actions because of pattern of behavior of period of time, replicated in other countries. We believe is the right approach to take.

“We’re taking these actions consistent with our assessment of what Russia has done – they have been interfering in both the American democratic process and in the conduct of American diplomacy. That should concern all Americans and members of both parties – a sustained effort to both harass our diplomatic personnel and interfere in our democratic process. We have no reason to believe that Russia’s activities will cease – they have been engaged in malicious cyber activity not just here in the United States but in other democratic countries. One reason to sustain [these] activities is that there is every reason that Russia will continue to interfere… These are executive actions. If a future president decided to allow in Russian intelligence agents, reopen those diplomatic compounds that are being used for intelligence, that compromises US national security.”

Here are the details from the White House:

Sanctioning Malicious Russian Cyber Activity

In response to the threat to U.S. national security posed by Russian interference in our elections, the President has approved an amendment to Executive Order 13964.  As originally issued in April 2015, this Executive Order created a new, targeted authority for the U.S. government to respond more effectively to the most significant of cyber threats, particularly in situations where malicious cyber actors operate beyond the reach of existing authorities.  The original Executive Order focused on cyber-enabled malicious activities that:

  • Harm or significantly compromise the provision of services by entities in a critical infrastructure sector;
  • Significantly disrupt the availability of a computer or network of computers (for example, through a distributed denial-of-service attack); or
  • Cause a significant misappropriation of funds or economic resources, trade secrets, personal identifiers, or financial information for commercial or competitive advantage or private financial gain (for example, by stealing large quantities of credit card information, trade secrets, or sensitive information).

The increasing use of cyber-enabled means to undermine democratic processes at home and abroad, as exemplified by Russia’s recent activities, has made clear that a tool explicitly targeting attempts to interfere with elections is also warranted.  As such, the President has approved amending Executive Order 13964 to authorize sanctions on those who:

  • Tamper with, alter, or cause a misappropriation of information with the purpose or effect of interfering with or undermining election processes or institutions.

Using this new authority, the President has sanctioned nine entities and individuals:  two Russian intelligence services (the GRU and the FSB); four individual officers of the GRU; and three companies that provided material support to the GRU’s cyber operations.

  • The Main Intelligence Directorate (a.k.a. Glavnoe Razvedyvatel’noe Upravlenie) (a.k.a. GRU) is involved in external collection using human intelligence officers and a variety of technical tools, and is designated for tampering, altering, or causing a misappropriation of information with the purpose or effect of interfering with the 2016 U.S. election processes.
  • The Federal Security Service (a.k.a. Federalnaya Sluzhba Bezopasnosti) (a.k.a FSB) assisted the GRU in conducting the activities described above.
  • The three other entities include the Special Technology Center (a.k.a. STLC, Ltd. Special Technology Center St. Petersburg) assisted the GRU in conducting signals intelligence operations; Zorsecurity (a.k.a. Esage Lab) provided the GRU with technical research and development; and the Autonomous Noncommercial Organization “Professional Association of Designers of Data Processing Systems” (a.k.a. ANO PO KSI) provided specialized training to the GRU. 
  • Sanctioned individuals include Igor Valentinovich Korobov, the current Chief of the GRU; Sergey Aleksandrovich Gizunov, Deputy Chief of the GRU; Igor Olegovich Kostyukov, a First Deputy Chief of the GRU; and Vladimir Stepanovich Alexseyev, also a First Deputy Chief of the GRU.

In addition, the Department of the Treasury is designating two Russian individuals,Evgeniy Bogachev and Aleksey Belan, under a pre-existing portion of the Executive Order for using cyber-enabled means to cause misappropriation of funds and personal identifying information.

  • Evgeniy Mikhailovich Bogachev is designated today for having engaged in significant malicious cyber-enabled misappropriation of financial information for private financial gain.  Bogachev and his cybercriminal associates are responsible for the theft of over $100 million from U.S. financial institutions, Fortune 500 firms, universities, and government agencies.
  • Aleksey Alekseyevich Belan engaged in the significant malicious cyber-enabled misappropriation of personal identifiers for private financial gain.  Belan compromised the computer networks of at least three major United States-based e-commerce companies.

Responding to Russian Harassment of U.S. Personnel 

Over the past two years, harassment of our diplomatic personnel in Russia by security personnel and police has increased significantly and gone far beyond international diplomatic norms of behavior.  Other Western Embassies have reported similar concerns.  In response to this harassment, the President has authorized the following actions:

  • Today the State Department declared 35 Russian government officials from the Russian Embassy in Washington and the Russian Consulate in San Francisco “persona non grata.”  They were acting in a manner inconsistent with their diplomatic status. Those individuals and their families were given 72 hours to leave the United States.
  • In addition to this action, the Department of State has provided notice that as of noon on Friday, December 30, Russian access will be denied to two Russian government-owned compounds, one in Maryland and one in New York.

Raising Awareness About Russian Malicious Cyber Activity

The Department of Homeland Security and Federal Bureau of Investigation are releasing a Joint Analysis Report (JAR) that contains declassified technical information on Russian civilian and military intelligence services’ malicious cyber activity, to better help network defenders in the United States and abroad identify, detect, and disrupt Russia’s global campaign of malicious cyber activities.

  • The JAR includes information on computers around the world that Russian intelligence services have co-opted without the knowledge of their owners in order to conduct their malicious activity in a way that makes it difficult to trace back to Russia. In some cases, the cybersecurity community was aware of this infrastructure, in other cases, this information is newly declassified by the U.S. government.
  • The report also includes data that enables cybersecurity firms and other network defenders to identify certain malware that the Russian intelligence services use.  Network defenders can use this information to identify and block Russian malware, forcing the Russian intelligence services to re-engineer their malware.  This information is newly de-classified.
  • Finally, the JAR includes information on how Russian intelligence services typically conduct their activities.  This information can help network defenders better identify new tactics or techniques that a malicious actor might deploy or detect and disrupt an ongoing intrusion.

This information will allow network defenders to take specific steps that can often block new activity or disrupt on-going intrusions by Russian intelligence services.  DHS and FBI are encouraging security companies and private sector owners and operators to use this JAR and look back within their network traffic for signs of malicious activity. DHS and FBI are also encouraging security companies and private sector owners and operators to leverage these indicators in proactive defense efforts to block malicious cyber activity before it occurs. DHS has already added these indicators to their Automated Indicator Sharing service.

“Cyber threats pose one of the most serious economic and national security challenges the United States faces today.  For the last eight years, this Administration has pursued a comprehensive strategy to confront these threats.  And as we have demonstrated by these actions today, we intend to continue to employ the full range of authorities and tools, including diplomatic engagement, trade policy tools, and law enforcement mechanisms, to counter the threat posed by malicious cyber actors, regardless of their country of origin, to protect the national security of the United States,” the White House stated.

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© 2016 News & Photo Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. For editorial feature and photo information, go to www.news-photos-features.com, email editor@news-photos-features.com. Blogging at  www.dailykos.com/blogs/NewsPhotosFeatures.  ‘Like’ us on facebook.com/NewsPhotoFeatures, Tweet @KarenBRubin

 

What’s at Stake in this Election? Everything

Hillary Clinton at a rally following the first presidential debate at Hofstra University, Long Island © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Hillary Clinton at a rally following the first presidential debate at Hofstra University, Long Island © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

By Karen Rubin, News & Photo Features

Most elections involve some measure of hysteria, assertions that they are “transformative,” “historic,” and “the election of our lifetime.” This election between Hillary Clinton, the most qualified candidate ever to seek the most powerful office on the planet and the first woman to ascend to the Presidency, and Donald Trump, the most unfit, is just such an election.

“We’ve never had such a stark contrast – of character, of vision. The stakes in this election could not be more clear,” First Lady Michelle Obama declared.

Their differences are not merely matters of degree, these two individuals are diametrically opposed in every conceivable way.

But even if Donald Trump weren’t the most temperamentally unfit, inexperienced, morally bankrupt and wrong-headed candidate to ever seek the presidency, I would still whole-heartedly endorse Hillary Clinton, beginning with her biography, her career, her values, and finally, her experience, her competence, her platform and agenda.

I could go down the list of the extraordinarily detailed policy plans she has presented – to address income inequality, immigration reform, criminal justice reform, climate action, education, college affordability, health care, drug prices, infrastructure development, research and development, women’s reproductive rights, gun violence prevention, voting rights,  workers rights, parental leave (I could go on and on and on). (Go to her website, hillaryclinton.com, for details.)

I am cheered that at last, a Presidential candidate really “gets it” – prioritizing issues that have never before been at the forefront precisely because she is a woman and understands what families are going through, what women are still going through, the struggle the middle class is going through. She knows the slings and arrows of being the first woman to have crashed through the barriers to become a major party’s nominee for President and (hopefully) and would be the first woman to hold the office in our history. She brings that sensibility, that understanding, that lifetime of triumphing over adversity as a true trailblazer for women’s equality, going back to her earliest years after Yale Law School, fighting against discrimination and the backlash in Arkansas until she dropped her “Rodham” name for a married name of “Clinton.”

And in the same way as I whole-heartedly supported Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders, she has the skills, the big-picture vision, the pragmatism and the tools to actually get these done (assuming she isn’t blocked, obstructed, stymied and delegitimized by the Republicans as they already promise they will do as they did to Obama). I am excited about a pragmatic progressive as President.

But while Hillary Clinton has been specific in her long, long list of policy proposals, which indicate her sensibilities and priorities, Donald Trump, has been vague, offering pie-in-sky – promising on Day 1 to end criminal violence, restore law and order, defeat ISIS (the list goes on and on giving you the idea that Day 1 will be Biblical in length). To the extent he has been more detailed, he has been frankly, frightening.

His pronouncements of what he would do to the nation domestically (repeal Obamacare, rescind the Clean Power Plan, withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement, shut down the EPA, overturn regulations, eliminate corporate taxes, round up millions of undocumented immigrants), would destroy millions of jobs, raise the national debt and plunge the US into another recession. But while what he would do domestically is chilling, his outrageous, erratic statements about military and foreign policy are horrifying.

His fawning over dictators, strongmen and tyrants like Vladimir Putin and North Korea’s Kim Jong-un, while gushing in the admiration they express for him, and indeed, his close collaboration with Russian interests (including encouraging Russian espionage and interference in US elections) is unsettling, but his willful ignorance, naivete about his role as Commander-in-Chief should strike terror.

Trump has said he knows more than the generals, has touted using torture and killing family members of suspected terrorists. He has said he would not come to the support of NATO allies who don’t pay and would advocate nuclear weapons for Saudi Arabia, Japan and South Korea, and is cavalier about using nuclear weapons in Europe (“If you have weapons, why wouldn’t you use them?” “I would bomb the shit out of them.”). He tries to disguise is lack of an actual plan by saying he wants to keep it “secret” and he wants to be “unpredictable.”

Trump has demonstrated over and over that he is temperamentally, intellectually and morally unfit as commander-in-chief, and completely ignorant and inept in anything approaching foreign policy. His undisclosed but suspected business dealings, including Russian oligarchs and debt to the Chinese National Bank, coupled with his propensity to use his campaign to enrich his business, are warnings that he would run foreign policy for his own self-interest. Indeed, as a narcissist, he would conflate the national interest with his own.

Since declaring his candidacy, he has swept away decades that have slowly led to a cultural acceptance of diversity, reinvigorating racism, misogyny, religious bias. He’s made it okay to hate “others” and brought White Nationalists and Neo-Nazis unbelievably out of shadows and into the mainstream.

Trump has run as the “successful businessman,” the anti-politician, the outsider with the predictable outsider, non-politician slogan of bringing “change” to Washington and “draining the swamp”.  And during a campaign built upon one lie after another (75% of the time, according to fact checkers), the biggest lies are that he is a successful businessman, a philanthropist (he isn’t), and basically everything he has promised. Trump has basically boasted that he sees politics as a sales job – or more accurately, a Con Job – leaving a string of defaulted and defrauded investors, contractors, workers and customers. For him, getting sued and suing (3500 lawsuits, including pending ones concerning Trump University and an allegation of rape) are all par for the course – he thinks because he has more money than his adversary, he will win. (Not to mention his henchman, Roger Stone, who may well have been the connection between Russian hackers and Wikileaks, was a dirty trickster for Richard Nixon.)

He has stoked a strain of populism that is virulent, divisive, full of hatred and bigotry – because it has served his political purpose. He has shown contempt for the Bill of Rights protections of religious freedom, press freedom, freedom of speech and ignorance of the Constitution.

Consider who Trump, who has surrounded himself with bullies, misogynists, profligates, sexual predators, racists and corporatists, would appoint to key offices: Roger Ailes, Steve Bannon, Chris Christie, Rudy Giuliani, Newt Gingrich, Steve King, David Duke, Carl Icahn. And he has already provided a list of Supreme Court likely nominees, each and every one who would overturn Roe v Wade and continue down the anti-democratic path to oligarchy.

Finally, consider the fact that if Donald Trump wins the election, it means that the Senate and House will also remain in Republican hands, the Supreme Court will shift wildly further toward right wing extremism overturning civil rights, women’s rights, voting rights, criminal, economic and environmental justice for decades; all the committees will remain in control of Republicans who have been responsible for the stagnation, gridlock and dysfunction in government that is the source of national malaise.

“We can’t have a racist climate denier who lies about his personal fortune lead our country,” said Raúl Grijalva. “Our country needs a president who understands that issues like climate change, systemic racism and immigration reform are serious and demand a competent federal response.

“Donald Trump has nothing to offer but anger and grievance and blame. And so he – his closing argument asks, what do you have to lose? Well, I’m here to tell you: everything,” President Obama said at a campaign event in Miami Gardens, Florida. “Progress is on the ballot. Civility is on the ballot. Tolerance is on the ballot. Justice is on the ballot. Equality is on the ballot. Our democracy is on the ballot.”
Quite literally, all the values that America is supposed to stand for are on the ballot.

It’s why this is not an election where out of pique against Hillary Clinton (recognizing a 30-year propaganda campaign waged, yes, by a right-wing conspiracy), voters either cast a ballot for the absolutely unvetted third party choices, Gary Johnson (whose outrageous comments suggest he broke his own promise not to smoke marijuana during the campaign), or Jill Stein (if the same level of scrutiny had been leveled, or the same standard of measure, would they get a vote?), or stay home. Staying home is exactly the objective of Donald Trump’s campaign, whose officials have declared that the only way Trump can win is to suppress the vote of three key groups: idealistic white idealists, young women and African-Americans.

On the other hand, if Hillary Clinton is elected, there will be comprehensive immigration reform, a further move toward universal access to health care and rationality in drug prices, continued push to climate action and environmental protection, tax reform that both promotes jobs creation and narrows income inequality, pay parity and paid parental leave, more access to child care, affordable college tuition, and a wide array of policies that promote the well being of families and working people, and the biggest investment in infrastructure since World War II.

“This is truly an unprecedented election,” First Lady Michelle Obama declared in Winston-Salem. “I don’t think we’ve ever had two candidates with such dramatically different visions of who we are and how we move forward as a nation. One candidate has a vision that’s grounded in hopelessness and despair, a vision of a country that is weak and divided, where our communities are in chaos, our fellow citizens a threat. This candidate calls on us to turn against each other, to build walls, to be afraid.

“And then there’s Hillary’s vision for this country, a vision of a nation that is powerful and vibrant and strong, big enough to have a place for all of us, a nation where we each have something very special to contribute, and where we are always stronger together.”
What’s at stake? The Supreme Court. Climate Action. Immigration Reform. Civil Rights. Criminal Justice Reform. Tax Reform. Economic Justice. Environmental Justice. Women’s Reproductive Rights. Women’s Rights. Voting Rights. Gun Violence Prevention. Diplomacy. Alliances. National Security.

And on January 20, 2017, if she is elected – as I pray she is – I hope she will take the oath of office as Hillary Rodham Clinton and forever be known as President Rodham-Clinton. She never gave up her individuality and her personhood because she was married, and her legacy should be in her own name, as well.

_________________________

© 2016 News & Photo Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. For editorial feature and photo information, go to www.news-photos-features.com, email editor@news-photos-features.com. Blogging at www.dailykos.com/blogs/NewsPhotosFeatures.  ‘Like’ us on facebook.com/NewsPhotoFeatures, Tweet @KarenBRubin

Hillary for America Highlights Differences in Candidates’ Vision; Releases ‘Trump Effect’ Video

New Hillary for America video documents “The Trump Effect.”
New Hillary for America video documents “The Trump Effect.”

Hillary for America has released a new video on the “Trump Effect,” highlighting the differences between Hillary Clinton’s vision and approach and Donald Trump’s.

“Hillary Clinton believes in an America where everyone counts and everyone has a place. She’s spent her life acting on those beliefs, from her early work at the Children’s Defense Fund through a campaign that has consistently called out Trump’s division and hatred while offering a policy agenda that would bring people together and address the issues that keep us apart. Hillary has prioritized issues like immigration reform, endingLGBT discrimination and criminal justice reform.

“American voters face a choice of two different visions for America:  Donald Trump’sdark and divisive vision that could tear our country apart, or Hillary Clinton’s hopeful, inclusive vision that says we’re stronger together.

“Donald Trump set the tone of his campaign by insulting Mexican immigrants and has continued using those kinds of insults and divisive comments through today. From Muslims to Gold Star families to a judge of Mexican heritage born in America to one of his own African American supporters just this past week, no one has been safe from Trump’s insults and lies.Trump has also built his political identity on conspiracy theories, starting with the racist lie that President Obama was not born in America and support from hate movements like the alt-right—whose leaders Trump has embraced.”

Clinton has been  campaigning in Nevada and Arizona where she highlighted Trump’s divisive agenda and the high stakes in this election by pointing to Trump’s long record of insults against communities of color. In Jan Brewer and Joe Arpaio’s backyard, Clinton will counter their attempts to silence Latinos by mobilizing the community to break with history and turn the state blue on November 8th.

Also today, Hillary For America is launching a new video showing how Trump words and actions have encouraged bullying and fear in schools across our country, something experts are calling the “Trump Effect.”  Children — members of the groups that Trump so frequently attacks — are speaking out about the harassment and threats they are facing because the Republican nominee has targeted who they are or how they pray.

WATCH: “The Trump Effect

“As millions of Americans continue to vote early, and with election day less than a week away, it’s worth taking a look back at Trump’s history of divisive and hateful rhetoric,” the campaign noted:

THE “TRUMP EFFECT”

  • Trump’s rhetoric has given rise to bullying and violence in schools and communities across America.
  • Adopted children in Wisconsin and New York worried they would be sent back to Africa.
  • A child in New Jersey worried he, his mother, and sibling would be separated from his father because they have a different skin color.
  • California school children have endured xenophobic taunts on the playground, including being told they were “born in a Taco Bell.”
  • Students broke out into chants like “build the wall”  when their sports teams competed against Latino students in ColoradoIndiana and Wisconsin. A fraternity in Louisiana constructed a wall made of sandbags “emblazoned with pro-Trump slogans.”
  • A teacher in Arizona allegedly told a student “I can’t wait until Trump is elected. He’s going to deport all you Muslims.”
  • A man and a woman were attacked in Massachusetts and Washington, D.C. respectively by people who attributed their motivations to Donald Trump.

AFRICAN AMERICANS

  • Trump, for years, peddled a racist lie that President Obama was not born in the U.S.
  • Trump pointed at an attendee and called him “my African American” during a campaign rally.
  • Trump to African Americans and Hispanics: ‘You’re living in poverty, your schools are no good, you have no jobs, 58% of your youth is unemployed — what the hell do you have to lose?’
  • Trump retweeted “racially loaded” and “wildly inaccurate” statistics claiming Blacks were responsible for 81 percent of White homicides.
  • Trump blamed crime in majors cities on Hispanics and African Americans.
  • Trump claimed crime in Oakland and Ferguson was so bad that it was dangerous like Iraq and has continued to compare inner cities to war zones.
  • Trump to a Black Lives Matter protester: “Maybe he should have been roughed up.”
  • Trump paid for a racially provocative ad calling on New York lawmakers to reinstate the death penalty for five young African American men who were wrongfully accused of raping a woman.

IMMIGRANTS, LATINOS

  • Trump called Mexican immigrants “criminals” and “rapists.”
  • Trump said Mexican immigrants bring “tremendous infectious disease.”
  • Trump on Judge Gonzalo Curiel: “He’s a Mexican. We’re building a wall between here and Mexico.”
  • Trump refused to stop using the term “anchor baby.”
  • Trump referred to some Hispanic immigrants as “bad hombres.”
  • Trump has said he would have a “deportation force” to go roundup and deportundocumented immigrants.
  • Trump would deport children born in America because he does not think their citizenship is valid.
  • Trump said Mexico was sending “The bad ones over because they don’t want to pay for them.”
  • Trump’s campaign CEO, Steve Bannon, is currently on leave from his job as head of Breitbart News. Breitbart drove conspiratorial reporting about Chobani in retaliation for hiring immigrants and refugees, making the company’s founder the target of vicious social media attacks.

MUSLIMS

  • Trump called to ban an entire group of people based on their religion.
  • Trump on his proposed Muslim ban: “I’m not softening my stance at all … In fact, you could say it’s an expansion.”
  • Trump said “I’m looking now at territories. People were so upset when I used the word Muslim… Now, we have a religious, you know, everybody wants to be protected. And that’s great. And that’s the wonderful part of our Constitution. I view it differently. ”
  • Trump defended his Muslim ban by comparing it to Japanese internment camps. Not surprisingly, he said he might have supported internment camps.
  • Trump suggested he would create a database to track American Muslims.

VETERANS, SERVICE MEMBERS AND THEIR FAMILIES

  • Trump repeatedly attacked a Muslim Gold Star family who lost their son in Iraq.
  • Trump claims that U.S. Army Captain Humayun Khan would be alive if he had been president.
  • Trump calls our military “a disaster.”
  • Trump said “our military can’t beat ISIS.”
  • Trump said, “I know more about ISIS than the generals do. Believe me.”
  • Trump said the generals have been “reduced to rubble.”
  • Trump said John McCain was “not a war hero” because he was captured.
  • Trump suggested veterans experiencing PTSD aren’t “strong.”
  • Trump’s businesses have reportedly fired employees for their military service.
  • Trump scammed veterans through his sham Trump University.

DISABLED AMERICANS

  • Trump mocked a disabled reporter.
  • Trump reportedly called a deaf actress on the Apprentice “retarded.”
  • Trump referred to a paralyzed news commentator as a “guy that can’t buy a pair of pants.”
  • Trump faced a series of lawsuits for failing to comply with the ADA.
  • Trump repeatedly attempted to kick disabled veterans off of Fifth Avenue over two decades, calling the situation “deplorable.”

DISCRIMINATION IN TRUMP BUSINESSES

  • Trump was twice sued by the Department of Justice for discrimination in housing.
  • Trump employees marked applications from minorities with “C” for “Colored.”
  • The housing complex that was one of Trump’s first real estate deals faceddiscrimination charges.
  • Trump’s businesses lagged in minority hiring. Former employees who worked for Trump over several decades said they don’t remember a single black vice president-level executive at Trump Tower.

TRUMP AND HATE MOVEMENTS

  • Trump’s campaign shared an anti-Semitic image on his twitter that first appeared on white supremacist websites.
  • Trump has received an outpouring of support from hate movements like the alt-right.
  • White Supremacists used Trump’s candidacy as a recruiting tool.
  • White Supremacists and Klan members supported Trump, comparing his views to their views.
  • Former KKK Leader David Duke said Trump has “Made it OK to talk about these incredible concerns of European Americans today, because I think European Americans know they are the only group that can’t defend their own essential interests and their point of view.
  • Virginia KKK Leader Endorses Trump: ‘What He Believes In, We Believe In.’”
  • Trump on being supported by White Supremacists: “A lot of people like me.”

TRUMP ENCOURAGING VIOLENCE

  • Trump said to a protester “I’d like to punch him in the face, I’ll tell ya” and mourned “we’re not allowed to punch back anymore. I love the old days … They’d be carried out on a stretcher, folks.”
  • Trump offered to pay the legal fees of a supporter who attacked protester.
  • Trump claimed he could “shoot somebody” and not lose any votes.
  • Trump called to throw a protestor out into the cold without their coat.

FBI Director Comey Under Fire for Unprecedented Action Rekindling Clinton Email Issue

Hillary for America Chair John Podesta: “It is extraordinary that we would see something like this just 11 days out from a presidential election. The Director owes it to the American people to immediately provide the full details of what he is now examining. We are confident this will not produce any conclusions different from the one the FBI reached in July.” © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Hillary for America Chair John Podesta: “It is extraordinary that we would see something like this just 11 days out from a presidential election. The Director owes it to the American people to immediately provide the full details of what he is now examining. We are confident this will not produce any conclusions different from the one the FBI reached in July.” © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

By Karen Rubin, News & Photo Features

Members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus demanded FBI Director James Comey release more details about the letter he sent to Congress just 11 days before Election Day – an unprecedented action – renewing the email scandal that has plagued Secretary Hillary Clinton’s entire campaign. Otherwise, they charge, it raises questions about Director Comey’s political motivations, handing Donald Trump’s campaign the ammunition they were looking for to depress voter turnout.

“For months, Donald Trump and his henchmen have led chants of ‘Lock her up.’ Now they are trying to turn this letter into something it is not, because the only way he can win is to hijack the election,” stated Congressman Luis Gutierrez (Illinois), and suggested that FBI Director Comey was similarly bullied into making this unprecedented statement, with the effect of breathing new fire into the Trump’s imploding campaign.

But, Gutierrez asserted, “The more we learn, the more we know it is overblown. Initially we told that the investigation has been reopened. That’s debunked. The emails don’t come from Clinton’s server at all. It may be that most or all are duplicates of others that have already been turned over.”

But he said, it raises questions about Comey’s own motivations. If only to give an update on an investigation, he noted, “You don’t hear Comey giving updates” on Russia’s role in the hack of the Democratic National Committee and whether the Trump campaign had any involvement.

“Why go so far as to send this highly questionable, unusual letter? [With so little information] it doesn’t make sense…He sent it, knowing it would be leaked, and he sent to 8 Republican chairmen who were sworn to defeat Clinton.

“Trump may bully the FBI but we cannot let him bully us out of this election,” he said.

Congresswoman Lujan Grisham of New Mexico called it, “another political ploy that has nothing to do with fairness or even professionalism.”

The action casts a shadow over Comey’s leadership, Grisham charged. “It is very difficult for them to rebut the presumption that this was politically motivated, which really should shake us to our core about the DoJ and FBI. This is absolutely unprecedented. You don’t engage this way, so close to an election and without any facts.

“Given that there has been a lot of pressure to the FBI to do something, find something, it is not difficult to figure it out. It allows one side to paint a scenario.” The conclusion that must be drawn, she said, “is that it is aimed at voter suppression, to depress turnout because Clinton is the most qualified candidate ever to run. She has incredible, proven track record for getting things done that this country needs to get done. It appears that that kind of distraction that might suppress remaining voters to stay home. We need Comey and FBI to explain.”

To illustrate how unusual Comey’s action is, she said, “it is not the practice of the FBI or Justice Department to release any kind of information related to ongoing or potential investigation, of which this is neither. And members of Congress should not engage or interfere. Because if you don’t hold to that practice it minimizes the independence and objectivity of the office. That highly unprofessional, out-of-practice effort, particularly engaging 8 Republican members of Congress, told us this is political.

“This has nothing to do with private server, Secretary Clinton’s emails. This is about somebody who has worked with Clinton, and part of an entirely separate investigation.”

Congressman Joaquin Castro (Texas) highlighted the unprecedented timing of releasing such a potentially inflammatory statement just 11 days before an election.

“This would be strange before a City Council election, much less a Presidential election…Director Comey showed extremely poor judgment in deciding to release the letter he did yesterday. He is irresponsible if he does not provide further information as to why looking at these emails. There has been no indication the emails are from or to Secretary Clinton or that she is involved in any way.”

The Hillary for America campaign documented the reaction:

Comey Under Fire After Sending Unprecedented Letter

FBI Director James Comey is under widespread criticism for breaking department precedent by commenting on an ongoing investigation, and doing so just days before a presidential election. Indeed, the Washington Post reported this morning senior Justice Department officials made perfectly clear to Comey that he would be in violation of long-standing DOJ policy.

Moreover, according to CNN, Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates both objected to Comey sending this inappropriate letter to Congress. Nevertheless, Director Comey independently decided to move forward, rattling the presidential election with a note that was heavy on innuendo and extremely light on actual information or needed details.

The result? Broad bipartisan condemnation and demands for the swift disclosure of more information:

Washington Post: Justice officials warned FBI that Comey’s decision to update Congress was not consistent with department policy: “Senior Justice Department officials warned the FBI that Director James B. Comey’s decision to notify Congress about renewing the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server was not consistent with long-standing practices of the department, according to officials familiar with the discussions. Comey told Justice Department officials that he intended to inform lawmakers of newly discovered emails. These officials told him the department’s position “that we don’t comment on an ongoing investigation. And we don’t take steps that will be viewed as influencing an election,” said one Justice Department official who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the high-level conversations.”

CNN: Comey notified Congress of email probe despite DOJ concerns: “Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates objected to FBI Director James Comey’s decision to notify Congress about his bureau’s review of emails related to Hillary Clinton’s personal server, law enforcement officials familiar with the discussion said. Comey decided to disregard their objections and sent the letter Friday anyway, shaking the presidential race 11 days before the election and nearly four months after the FBI chief said he wouldn’t recommend criminal charges over the Democratic nominee’s use of the server.

New York Times: Justice Dept. Strongly Discouraged Comey on Move in Clinton Email Case: “Mr. Comey’s letter opened him up to criticism not only from Democrats but also from current and former officials at the F.B.I. and the Justice Department, including Republicans. ‘There’s a longstanding policy of not doing anything that could influence an election,’ said George J. Terwilliger III, a deputy attorney general under the first President George Bush. ‘Those guidelines exist for a reason. Sometimes that makes for hard decisions. But bypassing them has consequences.’”

Politico: Comey’s disclosure shocks former prosecutors: “James Comey’s surprise announcement that investigators are examining new evidence in the probe of Hillary Clinton’s email server put the FBI director back under a harsh spotlight, reigniting criticism of his unusual decision to discuss the high-profile case in front of the media and two congressional committees.”

Los Angeles Times: “The emails were not to or from Clinton, and contained information that appeared to be more of what agents had already uncovered, the official said, but in an abundance of caution, they felt they needed to further scrutinize them.

Washington Post Editorial: The damage Comey’s bad timing could do: “Mr. Podesta said he is ‘confident’ full disclosure ‘will not produce any conclusions different from the one the FBI reached in July.’ If so, the question will be how badly damaged was Ms. Clinton’s candidacy by the 11th-hour re-eruption of a controversy that never should have generated so much suspicion or accusation in the first place.”

New York Times Editorial: “But Mr. Comey’s failure to provide any specifics about a new, potentially important development, less than two weeks before Election Day, is confounding. As Mr. Comey put it in July: “The American people deserve those details in a case of intense public interest.” They deserve details even more urgently today.”

Bloomberg: FBI Shocker on Clinton Fuels Criticism of Comey’s Tactics: “FBI Director James Comey is facing extraordinary pressure to explain himself after dropping a bombshell on the campaign of Hillary Clinton just 11 days before the presidential election… Former prosecutors and lawmakers from both parties expressed shock and dismay at Comey’s highly unusual decision, which flouted decades of legal custom that call for avoiding taking actions that could affect the outcome of an election.”

Washington Post: FBI Director James B. Comey under fire for his controversial decision on the Clinton email inquiry: “Nick Ackerman, a former federal prosecutor in New York and an assistant special Watergate prosecutor, said Comey ‘had no business writing to Congress about supposed new emails that neither he nor anyone in the FBI has ever reviewed.’”

Huffington Post: News Outlets Dial Back Reports Of FBI ‘Reopening’ Clinton Email Case: “The story took several other turns on Friday afternoon that complicated the early, screaming headlines, and then ensured the story would remain a topic of discussion in the days ahead. Multiple outlets subsequently reported that the new emails weren’t sent by Clinton and didn’t come from her private server.”

CNN Legal Analyst, Paul Callan: Time for FBI director Comey to go: “Comey’s public announcement in July that the FBI had concluded its investigation regarding Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server in the conduct of official State Department business and would not recommend the lodging of criminal charges was historically unprecedented in a high-profile political case.”

Washington Post Op-Ed by Former DOJ Spokesman Matt Miller: James Comey fails to follow Justice Department rules yet again: “With each step, Comey moved further away from department guidelines and precedents, culminating in Friday’s letter to Congress. This letter not only violated Justice rules on commenting on ongoing investigations but also flew in the face of years of precedent about how to handle sensitive cases as Election Day nears…. The director of the FBI has great power at his disposal…. With that independence comes a responsibility to adhere to the rules that protect the rights of those whom the FBI investigates. Comey has failed that standard repeatedly in his handling of the Clinton investigation.”

New York Times: F.B.I. Chief James Comey Is in Political Crossfire Again Over Emails: “The reaction was swift and damning, with Mrs. Clinton’s supporters and even some Republicans blasting Mr. Comey. Indeed, Mr. Comey, who was attacked this summer by Democrats and Republicans for both his decision not to bring charges against Mrs. Clinton and for the way he handled it, found himself in an even stronger crossfire on Friday.”

Los Angeles Times’ Michael McGough: FBI director should have known what his Clinton emails letter would unleash: “Having raised new doubts about Clinton so close to an election, Comey has an obligation —a moral obligation if not a legal one — to do everything he can to expedite the “additional work” required to determine whether this new information does, in fact, cast doubt on his earlier conclusion that Clinton wasn’t criminally culpable.”

Aurora Sentinel Editorial: FBI’s Comey needs to come clean on details, motivation — or resign: “If there’s damning or critical information about Clinton staff handling of email that creates the clear and immediate threat to national security that would warrant such a ploy, Americans deserve to have Clinton explain them, and Clinton must get that opportunity. Otherwise, Comey needs to apologize for his infelicity and possibly politically motivated stunt, and immediately step aside.”

Newsweek: Hillary Clinton’s Emails: The Real Reason The FBI Is Reviewing More Of Them: “Unfortunately, by trying to have things both ways – revealing the change in circumstances while remaining vague about what the agents know – Comey has created that misleading impression that could change the outcome of a presidential election, an act that, if uncorrected, will undoubtedly go down as one of the darkest moments in the bureau’s history.”

New Yorker: James Comey Broke With Loretta Lynch And Justice Department Tradition: “Coming less than two weeks before the Presidential election, Comey’s decision to make public new evidence that may raise additional legal questions about Clinton was contrary to the views of the Attorney General, according to a well-informed Administration official. Lynch expressed her preference that Comey follow the department’s longstanding practice of not commenting on ongoing investigations, and not taking any action that could influence the outcome of an election, but he said that he felt compelled to do otherwise.”

Charlotte Observer Editorial: Comey drops Hillary Clinton email bombshell; so tell us more: “But it is extraordinary for such volatile information to emerge so close to Election Day and that’s especially true given how few specifics are known. Because Comey was so vague, voters can’t know what to think. The new emails could be anything from meaningless to evidence of criminal activity by Clinton to most anything in between.”

ThinkProgress: The ‘new’ Clinton emails might all be duplicates: “So, to be clear, the FBI Director delivered a gut punch to the Clinton campaign, despite the fact that 1) he doesn’t know what he has; 2) it may be something that he already had; and, 3) whatever it is that he has, it reportedly didn’t come from Secretary Clinton, and was not sent to her.”

Huffington Post: Heat Rises For FBI Director James Comey As Both Campaigns Demand Email Answers: “Both camps demanded that FBI Director James Comey disclose more details about the emails and the bureau’s investigation, which he made known in a letter to Congress just 11 days before the election…. Many challenged the FBI director’s motives, increasing the pressure on him to comply with calls from both campaigns for more information.”

See: Trump Trumps Up Non-Story About FBI Looking into Additional Clinton Emails

________________________

© 2016 News & Photo Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. For editorial feature and photo information, go to www.news-photos-features.com, email editor@news-photos-features.com. Blogging at www.dailykos.com/blogs/NewsPhotosFeatures.  ‘Like’ us on facebook.com/NewsPhotoFeatures, Tweet @KarenBRubin

 

Yet Another ‘Bombshell’ Clinton Revelation Fizzles As Facts Come Out

Hillary Clinton, Democratic candidate, campaigning for President © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Hillary Clinton, Democratic candidate, campaigning for President © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

It is so concerning how the Donald Trump campaign has seized on the vague statement FBI Director James Comey made, initially first to eight Republican Congressmen, and only later did he bother to clue in the Democratic members of the committees. Trump seized on this revelation as 1) “bigger than Watergate” and 2) satisfying that in fact, the FBI was not part of the conspiracy to rig the election as he had previously charged. But it has fed into the Trump campaign strategy which, in face of dwindling poll numbers, has focused on suppressing turnout from those who would vote for Clinton.

Here’s how the Hillary for America campaign has responded:

“Yesterday, Republican Congressional leaders leaked an unprecedented letter from FBI Director James Comey, with initial reports including dire headlines for Hillary Clinton. But like most “bombshell” discoveries about Clinton over the course of this campaign, it fizzled rapidly as facts actually became available,” the Hillary for America campaign stated. Let’s review…

YESTERDAY’S BOMBSHELL: NBC News: FBI re-opening investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private e-mail server

  • Rep. Jason Chaffetz: “FBI Dir just informed me, ‘The FBI has learned of the existence of emails that appear to be pertinent to the investigation.’ Case reopened”
  • GOP: “BREAKING NEWS: The FBI is re-opening their investigation into @HillaryClinton’s secret server.”

…facts emerge:

  1.       Investigation not reopened. Huffington Post: News Outlets Dial Back Reports Of FBI ‘Reopening’ Hillary Clinton Email Case
  2.      No emails had been withheld. NBC News: “the e-mails Comey announced today were NOT originally withheld by Clinton or campaign.”
  3.      Emails not from Clinton’s server. Bloomberg: New Clinton E-mails Not From Her Private Server, AP Says
  4.      Emails reportedly not to or from Clinton. Los Angeles Times: “The emails were not to or from Clinton”
  5.      No indication emails bear significance. Comey memo to employees: “we don’t know the significance of this newly discovered collection of emails”
  6.      Many emails likely duplicates of ones already turned over. ThinkProgress: The ‘new’ Clinton emails might all be duplicates
  7.      Comey letter violates DOJ policy. Washington Post: Justice officials warned FBI that Comey’s decision to update Congress was not consistent with department policy
  8.      Comey overruled AG Loretta Lynch. CNN: “Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates disagreed with FBI Director James Comey’s decision to notify Congress about his bureau’s review…”
  9.      Former officials on both sides of aisle criticized Comey. New York Times: “Mr. Comey’s letter opened him up to criticism not only from Democrats but also from current and former officials at the F.B.I. and the Justice Department, including Republicans.”
  10.   Clinton and Trump both calling for more information. Huffington Post: “Both camps demanded that FBI Director James Comey disclose more details about the emails and the bureau’s investigation” 

This is hardly the first time. It seems the script is always the same, the campaign noted:

  1.       Bombshell allegation is made hastily without facts available
  2.      Media breathlessly covers the latest supposed Clinton Scandal
  3.      Republicans declare that this time they’ve found the smoking gun
  4.      Initial explosive reports slowly fizzle on account of facts

Here are five of the many recent examples:

BOMBSHELL: @GOP, 8/30/16: “BREAKING: State Dept discovered 30 emails recovered from Hillary Clinton’s private server that discussed Benghazi.”

…facts emerge: Los Angeles Times, 9/7/16: “There appears to be only one new communication related to Benghazi… a complimentary note from a diplomat to Clinton, praising how she handled herself before a Senate panel investigating the matter.”

—-

BOMBSHELL: @GOP, 5/5/16: “Hacker ‘Guccifer’ told news outlets that he repeatedly accessed Clinton’s unsecure email server & that ‘it was easy’”

…facts emerge: FOX News, 7/7/16: Comey: Hacker ‘Guccifer’ Lied About Accessing Clinton’s Emails

—-

BOMBSHELL: @AP, 8/23/16: “BREAKING: AP analysis: More than half those who met Clinton as Cabinet secretary gave money to Clinton Foundation.”

…facts emerge: Vox, 8/24/16: “Except it turns out not to be true. The nut fact that the AP uses to lead its coverage is wrong, and Braun and Sullivan’s reporting reveals absolutely no unethical conduct….  the AP excluded from the denominator all employees of any government, whether US or foreign.”

—-

BOMBSHELL: Washington Post, 8/22/16: The FBI found 15,000 emails Hillary Clinton didn’t turn over. Uh oh.

…facts emerge: CNN, 10/7/16: “Okay, so what’s in this latest batch? Short answer: No bombshells. More than half of the emails are these so-called “near duplicates” of previously released emails… There are also a number of emails between Clinton and her close aides in which they discuss scheduling matters — timing for phone calls, meetings, etc…. None of the new emails contained information marked as classified or upgraded to classified.”

—-

BOMBSHELL: The Hill, 7/5/16: FBI director: Clinton emails were marked as classified at the time

…facts emerge: MediaIte, 7/7/16: FBI Director Admits Hillary Clinton Emails Were Not Properly Marked Classified

See: FBI Director Comey Under Fire for Unprecedented Action Rekindling Clinton Email Issue

Trump Trumps Up Non-Story about FBI Looking Into Additional Clinton Emails

Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton meet for third presidential debate in St. Louis, Oct. 19, 2016.
Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton meet for third presidential debate in St. Louis, Oct. 19, 2016.

In response to the letter sent by FBI Director James Comey to eight Republican committee chairman in Congress, Hillary for America Chair John Podesta released the following statement Friday:

“Upon completing this investigation more than three months ago, FBI Director Comey declared no reasonable prosecutor would move forward with a case like this and added that it was not even a close call. In the months since, Donald Trump and his Republican allies have been baselessly second-guessing the FBI and, in both public and private, browbeating the career officials there to revisit their conclusion in a desperate attempt to harm Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

“FBI Director Comey should immediately provide the American public more information than is contained in the letter he sent to eight Republican committee chairmen. Already, we have seen characterizations that the FBI is ‘reopening’ an investigation but Comey’s words do not match that characterization. Director Comey’s letter refers to emails that have come to light in an unrelated case, but we have no idea what those emails are and the Director himself notes they may not even be significant.

“It is extraordinary that we would see something like this just 11 days out from a presidential election.

“The Director owes it to the American people to immediately provide the full details of what he is now examining. We are confident this will not produce any conclusions different from the one the FBI reached in July.”

Earlier in the day, Donald Trump at a raucous rally irresponsibly inciting chants of “Lock her up,” and said, “I need to open with a very critical breaking news announcement. The FBI has just sent a letter to Congress informing them that they have discovered new emails pertaining to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s investigation, and they are reopening the case into her criminal and illegal conduct that threatens the security of the United States of America.

“Hillary Clinton’s corruption is on a scale we have never seen before. We must not let her take her criminal scheme into the Oval Office.”

And after weeks of declaring that he could only lose the election if it were rigged, he said he had newfound faith in the system.

“I have great respect for the fact that the FBI and the DOJ are now willing to have the courage to right the horrible mistake that they made. This was a grave miscarriage of justice that the American people fully understand. It is everybody’s hope that it is about to be corrected.”

What FBI Director James B. Comey actually wrote in his letter was far from how Trump mischaracterized it:

“In connection with an unrelated case, the FBI has learned of the existence of emails that appear to be pertinent to the investigation. I am writing to inform you that the investigative team briefed me on this yesterday, and I agreed that the FBI should take appropriate investigative steps designed to allow investigators to review these emails to determine whether they contain classified information, as well as to assess their importance to our investigation.

“Although the FBI cannot yet assess whether or not this material may be significant, and I cannot predict how long it will take us to complete this additional work. I believe it is important to update your Committees about our efforts in light of my previous testimony.”

Apparently, the emails came to light in the FBI’s unrelated investigation into former Congressman Anthony Weiner’s sexting scandal. One would wonder how that would relate to national security.

Dueling Candidates on Health Care: Hillary Clinton Would Improve Upon Obamacare, Donald Trump Would Repeal, Restore Control to Insurance Companies

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, during presidential debate, have very different health care proposals © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, during presidential debate, have very different health care proposals © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Before the Affordable Care Act (ACA, better known as Obamacare), more than 50 million Americans were without any health insurance and 20,000 people were losing their health insurance each month as the Bush Great Recession hemorrhaged 850,000 jobs a month. Though employers for more than a decade have been cutting back on health benefits (making it a Hobson’s choice to leave a terrible job or an abusive marriage), 170 million people get their insurance through their employment, and insurance companies were raising premiums annually at rates five times the rate of inflation, refusing to provide insurance based on pre-existing conditions, charging women higher rates (because they have babies, don’t you know), arbitrarily denying services, capping lifetime claims, throwing people off insurance, and pocketing 25-30% of the premium, with only 70-75% going to patient care. 

The Affordable Care Act, designed to make health insurance accessible to everyone, made improvements that have benefited everyone (as Hillary said), but meant the difference between life and death for the 50 million who could not afford health care at all. But to get it passed Obama had to make compromises, including giving up a public option. Then, chiefly Republican-dominated states rejected ACA, casting millions of their residents into a limbo where they could not qualify for the federally-provided exchange and didn’t have access through an employer. 

Significantly, ACA (Obamacare) was a Hail Mary to get universal access to health care, with some benefits in terms of containing health care costs. But the next round of health care reform would need to address costs. Here, in the words of their own campaigns, are the candidates’ health plans – in essence, Donald Trump pledges to repeal Obamacare and replace it by returning to “market” (that is, for-profit insurance companies) control, while Hillary Clinton is vowing to make necessary improvements to Obamacare to continue the goal of universal health care, correcting the inequities between states which refused Obamacare and possibly with a public option – Karen Rubin, News & Photo Features. 

Trump: Obamacare is a Disaster and Needs to be Repealed

“Obamacare Is A Disaster. You Know It We All Know It.”

During the second presidential debate, the question was asked, “What will you do to bring down the cost of health care? This is the rambling, nonsensical reply to the question, and the Trump campaign is so proud of it, they emailed it out:

trump-debate2-obamacare

TRUMP: “It is such a great question, and it’s maybe the question I get almost more than anything else. Outside of defense. Obamacare is a disaster. You know it we all know it. It is going up at numbers that nobody has ever seen worldwide. No One has ever seen numbers like this for healthcare. It is only getting worse. In seventeen, implodes by itself. Their methods of fixing it is to go and ask Congress for more money. More and more money. We right now have almost twenty trillion dollars in debt. Obama care with mother work. It is very bad, very bad health insurance. Far too expensive, and not only expensive for the person that has it, unbelievably expensive for our country. It’s got to be one of the biggest line items very shortly. We have to repeal it, and replace it with something absolutely much less expensive. And something that works. Where your plan can actually be tailored. We have to get rid of the lines around the state, and official lines. Where we stop insurance companies from coming in and competing because they wanted President Obama and whoever is working on it. They want to leave those lines because that gives the insurance companies, essentially, monopolies. We want competition. You will have the finest healthcare plan there is, she wants to go to a single-payer pan. Which would be a disaster. Somewhat similar to Canada. And if you haven’t noticed the Kitty Indians, when they need a big operations they come into the United States in many cases. Because they are system is so slow, it is catastrophic in certain ways. But she wants to go to single-payer. Which means the government basically rules everything. Hillary Clinton has been after this for years. Obamacare was the first step. Obamacare is a total disaster. And not only are your rates going up by numbers that no one has ever believed, but your deductibles are going up. So that unless you get hit by a truck, you are never going to be able to use it. It is a disastrous plan and it has to be repealed.” (Click To Watch)

Clinton’s Plan To Improve Our Health Care And Build On The Affordable Care Act

“Hillary Clinton will defend and expand on the progress made under Obama Administration toward universal coverage through the Affordable Care Act. The fact is, Hillary has never given up on the fight for universal coverage—and she won’t stop now. As First Lady, she refused to give up when the insurance industry and special interests attacked her and defeated healthcare reform. Instead, she worked with Republicans and Democrats to help create and implement the Children’s Health Insurance Program, which now provides health coverage to more than 8 million children,” Hillary for America campaign stated.

Hillary Clinton, Democratic candidate for President, advocates improving upon Obamacare toward the goal of universal health care © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Hillary Clinton, Democratic candidate for President, advocates improving upon Obamacare toward the goal of universal health care © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

As president, Hillary will build on the Affordable Care Act to expand coverage for millions of Americans.

  • She will  lower-out-of-pocket expenses for consumers purchasing health insurance on the Obamacare exchanges. Hillary believes that in order to expand coverage for families, we need to reduce the cost of purchasing health insurance on the Affordable Care Act exchanges. Her plan will provide enhanced relief for people on the exchanges, and provide a tax credit of up to $5,000 per family to offset a portion of excessive out-of-pocket and premium costs above 5% of their income. She will enhance the premium tax credits now available through the exchanges so that those now eligible will pay less of a percentage of their income than under current law and ensure that all families purchasing on the exchange will not spend more than 8.5 percent of their income for premiums. Finally, she will fix the “family glitch” so that families can access coverage when their employer’s family plan premium is too expensive.
  • She will support new incentives to encourage all states to expand Medicaid. Hillary will fight for health insurance for our lowest income residents living in every state across the nation. Hillary will follow President Obama’s proposal to allow any state that signs up for the Medicaid expansion to receive a 100 percent match for the first three years, and she will continue to look for other ways to incentivize states to expand Medicaid to meet the health needs of their most vulnerable residents.
  • She will invest in navigators, advertising and other outreach activities to make enrollment easier. Today, as many as 16 million people or half of all those uninsured are eligible but not enrolled in virtually free Medicaid coverage or exchange coverage for as little as $100 a month or less. Hillary will ensure anyone who wants to enroll can understand their options and do so easily, by dedicating more funding for outreach and enrollment efforts. She will invest $500 million per year in an aggressive enrollment campaign to ensure more people enroll in these extremely affordable options.
  • She will expand access to affordable health care to families regardless of immigration status. Hillary sponsored the Immigrant Children’s Health Improvement Act in the Senate, which later became law and allows immigrant children and pregnant women to obtain Medicaid and CHIP. She believes we should let families—regardless of immigration status—buy into the Affordable Care Act exchanges. Families who want to purchase health insurance should be able to do so.
  • She will continue to support a “public option”—and work to build on the Affordable Care Act to make it possible. As she did in her 2008 campaign health plan, and consistently since then, Hillary supports a “public option” to reduce costs and broaden the choices of insurance coverage for every American. To make immediate progress toward that goal, Hillary will work with interested governors, using current flexibility under the Affordable Care Act, to empower states to establish a public option choice.

Going forward, Hillary will build on these efforts and fight to ensure that the savings from these reforms benefits families—not just insurance companies, drug companies, and large corporations. She will expand coverage for Americans living in rural areas and continue a lifelong commitment to protecting women’s reproductive rights.

  • Hillary’s plan will reduce the cost of prescription drugs. Prescription drug spending accelerated from 2.5 percent in 2013 to 12.6 percent in 2014. It’s no wonder that almost three-quarters of Americans believe prescription drug costs are unreasonable. Hillary believes we need to demand lower drug costs for hardworking families and seniors and she will hold drug companies accountable for unjustified price hikes with new penalties.
  • Her plan will transform our healthcare system to reward value and quality. Hillary is committed to building on delivery system reforms in the Affordable Care Act that improve value and quality care for Americans.
  • Hillary will also work to expand access to rural Americans, who often have difficulty finding quality, affordable health care. She will explore cost-effective ways to broaden the scope of health care providers eligible for telehealth reimbursement under Medicare and other programs, including federally qualified health centers and rural health clinics. She will also call for states to support efforts to streamline licensing for telemedicine and examine ways to expand the types of services that qualify for reimbursement.

Hillary is continuing a lifelong fight to ensure women have access to reproductive health care. As senator, she championed access to emergency contraception and voted in favor of strengthening a woman’s right to make her own health decisions. As president, she will continue defending Planned Parenthood, which provides critical health services including breast exams and cancer screenings to 2.7 million patients a year. And she will work to ensure that all women have access to preventive care, affordable contraception, and safe, legal abortion—not just in principle, but in practice, by ending restrictions like the Hyde Amendment.

Hillary for America also challenged Trump’s proposals:

Trump Would Rip Away Health Coverage From 20 Million People And Let Insurers Write The Rules

Donald Trump would immediately work to repeal Obamacare–taking health insurance away from at least 20 million people and letting the insurance companies write the rules all over again. Trump even supported shutting down the government in order to defund Obamacare.

  • New York Times: “Millions of low-income people have gained coverage under the Affordable Care Act and could lost it if Congress repealed the law.”
  • Trump saidhe supported Republicans’ efforts to shut down the government over Obamacare and that they should have stuck together.

Trump’s “plan” would cost hundreds of billions more, and does not address people with pre-existing conditions.

  • CNBC: More $$$, More Uninsured: Donald Trump’s Health-Care Plan
  • VOX:  Trump’s Plan Would Take Health Insurance Away From 21 Million People. Sad!
  • Bloomberg: “Trump’s proposal is silent on the subject of preventing insurers from dropping coverage for those with preexisting conditions, a feature of Obamacare that Trump has said he supports.”

Meanwhile, the Trump campaign is making hay, taking a statement that President Bill Clinton made out of context:

FACT CHECK: President Clinton And The Affordable Care Act

“Don’t believe Donald Trump when he distorts what President Clinton said about the Affordable Care Act. Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Tim Kaine and President Obama all agree that we have made tremendous progress because of the Affordable Care Act, delivering coverage to 20 million people who were previously uninsured — but they agree there’s more we can do.”

  • Politifact: “In context, it’s also worth noting that Clinton’s actual comments never mentioned the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare. In fact, as we reviewed the transcript, we noticed that much of what Clinton said addressed issues that pre-dated the 2010 health care law, including concerns about high costs and a lack of guaranteed coverage.”

The bottom line is Hillary will defend and expand on the progress made under Obama Administration toward universal coverage through the Affordable Care Act, while Donald Trump would immediately work to repeal Obamacare, taking health insurance away from 20 million people – and letting the insurance companies write the rules all over again. Trump’s suggested healthcare plan would cost hundreds of billions more, and does not address people with pre-existing conditions.

See also:

By One Measure, Health Care Law Is a Record Success

Dueling Candidates: Hillary Clinton Sees Energy Policy as Climate Action, Donald Trump Touts ‘America First Energy Plan’

Dueling candidates: Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton have diametrically opposed energy plans © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Dueling candidates: Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton have diametrically opposed energy plans © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

The contrast between the candidates’ ideas for energy could not be starker. Hillary Clinton recognizes that energy policy is critical climate action (saving the planet and human habitability), seeing the potential for economic revolution and jobs creation through making the US the world leader in the emerging clean, renewable energy industry. Donald Trump, who never mentions climate change except to say it is a “hoax” perpetrated by China, frames his “America First Energy Plan” as unleashing production of fossil fuels – properly presenting it as “USA, USA and the rest of the planet be damned.” Keep in mind, the US is 5% of the world’s population but is responsible for 25% of the planet’s carbon emissions that are already rendering island nations virtually uninhabitable. China may be close, but it also has four times the population and, in face of choking, debilitating air pollution, is already implementing its agreement to reduce emissions. Here are their campaigns’ own statements about their plans. – Karen Rubin, News & Photo Features.

Clinton Has A Plan To Combat Climate Change

Hillary Clinton, first woman to head the Democratic ticket for President, takes a victory lap at a rally in Westbury, Long Island following a triumphant first debate, at Hofstra © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Hillary Clinton, first woman to head the Democratic ticket for President, takes a victory lap at a rally in Westbury, Long Island following a triumphant first debate, at Hofstra © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Hillary Clinton believes climate change is an urgent threat and a defining challenge of our time. That’s why she’s released a bold plan to make the United States the clean energy superpower of the 21st Century, create millions of good-paying jobs across the country, save families money on their energy bills, and ensure that no community is left out or left behind in the clean energy economy, from coal country to Indian country to our inner cities.

Her strategy calls for three goals to achieve within ten years of taking office:

  • Generate half of our electricity from clean sources, with half a billion solar panels installed by the end of her first term.
  • Cut energy waste in American homes, schools, hospitals and offices by a third and make American manufacturing the cleanest and most efficient in the world.
  • Reduce American oil consumption by a third through cleaner fuels and more efficient cars, boilers, ships and trucks.

Clinton has long fought for clean energy and measures to curb climate change:

  • As Secretary of State, she built an unprecedented global effort to combat climate change, making it a key U.S. foreign policy priority, and with President Obama achievedthe key diplomatic breakthrough that yielded the first international climate agreement in which major developing countries like China, India, and Brazil committed to reduce their GHG pollution.
  • She has praised the Paris climate agreement, calling it a “testament to America’s ability to lead the world in building a clean energy future where no one is left out or left behind.”
  • TIME op-ed: America Must Lead at Paris Climate Talks — “As Secretary of State, I put combating climate change on the agenda for my first trip to Beijing and kept it there over the next four years. I appointed the first high-level special envoy for climate change and led an international effort to launch the Climate and Clean Air Coalition to reduce so-called “super pollutants” that make up just a fraction of emissions, but drive a disproportionate share of warming. As President, I will protect and build on the progress President Obama has made at home.”
  • As Senator, she twiceintroduced the Strategic Energy Fund Act to prioritize investment in smarter energy and extend tax credits for ethanol, wind, and other renewable energy sources. The Strategic Energy Fund Act would have eliminated key tax breaks for oil and gas companies. She also introduced a measure that was signed into law requiring the Pentagon to address the risks of climate change in its strategic planning.
  • She worked with Senate colleagues of all stripes to confront these challenges, teaming upwith Bernie Sanders to create job training opportunities in the clean energy industry, and working with Jim Inhofe to expand alternative energy use in federal buildings.
  • She worked with Senator Chuck Schumer on legislation calling for the study and potential creation of a national heritage area surrounding Niagara Falls. Following the release of the study, the Niagara Falls National Heritage Area was established in 2008. She workedwith Carl Levin to safeguard wildlife and promote sound water management in the Great Lakes region, and she consistently fought against opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling.

While Clinton believes the U.S. must act to tackle climate change, Donald Trump is burying his head in the sand by claiming it’s a hoax.

DONALD J. TRUMP’S AMERICA FIRST ENERGY PLAN

Donald Trump addresses New York State Conservative Party in New York City © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Donald Trump addresses New York State Conservative Party in New York City © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Donald J. Trump’s Vision On Energy

Mr. Trump’s America First Energy Plan will make America energy independent, create millions of new jobs, and protect clean air and clean water. We will conserve our natural habitats, reserves and resources. And we will unleash an energy revolution that will bring vast new wealth to our country.

We must make American energy dominance a strategic economic and foreign policy goal of the United States. President Obama’s anti-energy orders have weakened our security, by keeping us reliant on foreign sources of energy. Every dollar of energy we don’t explore here, is a dollar of energy that makes someone else rich over there. Imagine a world in which our foes, and the oil cartels, can no longer use energy as a weapon.

America will become, and stay, totally independent of any need to import energy from the OPEC cartel or any nations hostile to our interests. And at the same time, we will work with our Gulf allies to develop a positive energy relationship as part of our anti-terrorism strategy.

Mr. Trump’s plan is an “all of the above” energy plan that encourages the use of natural gas and other American energy resources. It reduces emissions, the price of energy, and increases our economic output. In addition, we will decrease residential and transportation energy costs, leaving more money for American families as they pay less each month on power bills and gasoline for cars. Electricity will be more affordable for U.S. manufacturers, which will help our companies create jobs, and heaper energy will boost American agriculture.

An America First Energy plan will make the choice of sharing in our great American energy wealth, over sharing in the poverty promised by Hillary Clinton. We will engage in energy exploration which will create a resurgence in American manufacturing, dramatically reducing both our trade deficit and our budget deficit. The Trump plan will end the war on the American worker, putting our coal miners and steel workers back to work.

This new direction will end all job-destroying Obama executive actions as well as reduce and eliminate all barriers to responsible energy production. We must support coal production, safe hydraulic fracturing, and allow energy production on federal lands in appropriate areas. It is also time to open up vast areas of our offshore energy resources for safe production.

The Trump plan will use the revenues from energy production to reduce our debt, rebuild our inner cities, roads, schools, bridges and public infrastructure. It will ensure a reliable, streamlined regulatory and permitting process for energy infrastructure projects to be completed on time and on budget. We commit to solving real environmental problems in our communities like the need for clean and safe drinking water. Most importantly, American workers will be the ones building this new infrastructure.

Mr. Trump’s 100-Day Action Plan

Mr. Trump will rescind all the job-destroying Obama executive actions including the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule.

Mr. Trump will ask TransCanada to renew its permit application for the Keystone Pipeline.

Mr. Trump will lift moratoriums on energy production in federal areas

Mr. Trump will revoke policies that impose unwarranted restrictions on new drilling technologies. These technologies will create millions of jobs with a smaller footprint than ever before.

Mr. Trump will cancel the Paris Climate Agreement and stop all payments of U.S. tax dollars to U.N. global warming programs.

Any regulation that is outdated, unnecessary, bad for workers, or contrary to the national interest will be scrapped. Mr. Trump will also eliminate duplication, provide regulatory certainty, and trust local officials and local residents.

Any future regulation will go through a simple test: Is this regulation good for the American worker? If it doesn’t pass this test, the rule will not be approved.

 

Dueling Campaigns: Candidates Describe Their Plan to Defeat ISIS, Keep Americans Safe

 Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton clash in the second presidential debate © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton clash in the second presidential debate © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

In the second debate, Donald Trump answered the first question, ‘Are you both modeling positive and appropriate behaviors for today’s youth?’ by attacking Hillary Clinton and saying, “I will knock the hell out of ISIS. We are going to defeat ISIS. ISIS happened a number of years ago in a vacuum that was left because of bad judgment. And I will tell you, I will take care of ISIS.” 

Here is what the presidential candidates offer as their plan to defeat ISIS, as provided by their respective campaigns:

Hillary Clinton Has A Plan To Defeat ISIS, Keep Americans Safe

“The threat we face from terrorism is real, urgent, and knows no boundaries. Hillary Clinton knows that ISIS cannot be contained, it must be defeated.  Doing so takes more than empty talk and a handful of slogans. It takes a real plan, real experience, and real leadership. Donald Trump lacks all three. He won’t even say what his plan to defeat ISIS is,” the Hillary for America campaign stated.

Hillary Clinton has laid out a comprehensive plan to defeat ISIS and keep Americans safe at home.  She understands that it’s not enough just to take out specific groups or leaders – we must have a comprehensive strategy to win the long game against the global terrorist network and its ideology.

  • First, we need to protect our homeland, including by surging our intelligence to ensure law enforcement has the information they need to detect and disrupt plots, working with Silicon Valley to shut down terrorist propaganda and disrupt their recruitment efforts online, and keeping guns out of the hands of suspected terrorists.  Hillary has also proposed establishing a “lone wolf” task force to identify and stop radicalized individuals who may or may not have contact and direction from any formal organization.
  • Second, we need to lash up with our allies to dismantle the global network that supplies money, arms, propaganda and fighters to the terrorists.  This means targeted efforts to root out ISIS hubs and affiliates and preventing terrorist organizations from establishing hubs elsewhere, choking off the networks that facilitate their growth and expansion.
  • Third, we have to take the terrorists plotting against us off the battlefield. Hillary was in the Situation Room as we set out a strategy to eliminate dozens of seniors leaders of al-Qaeda. Now, we have to do the same thing to ISIS, starting with the leader of ISIS, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. And we need to take out ISIS’s strongholds in the Middle East by intensifying the coalition air campaign, supporting our partners on the ground, and pursuing diplomacy to end Syria’s civil war and close Iraq’s sectarian divide, because those conflicts are keeping ISIS alive.

As we do all of this, we cannot allow terrorists to intimidate us into abandoning our values or allowing us to be driven by fear to embrace policies that would actually make us less safe.  Hillary knows that all communities need to be engaged in the fight against ISIS.  As the Director of the FBI told Congress recently, anything that erodes trust with Muslim-Americans makes the job of law enforcement more difficult.  American Muslims are on the front lines of efforts to combat radicalization, and we need to increase trust and cooperation with law enforcement.  Since 9/11, law enforcement agencies have worked hard to build relationships with Muslim-American communities. They are the most likely to recognize the insidious effects of radicalization before it’s too late, and the best positioned to help us block it. Hillary knows we should be intensifying contacts in those communities, not scapegoating or isolating them. And as we engage in this fight, we will be stronger with our allies and partners standing with us, particularly in the Muslim world, as we cannot win this fight alone.

Donald Trump’s Plan to Defeat ISIS and Make America Safe Again

Mr. Trump’s Plan To Defeat ISIS Will:

  • Work with our Arab allies and friends in the Middle East so they can lead the fight against the Islamic State
  • Aggressively pursue joint and coalition military operations to crush and destroy ISIS, coordinate international cooperation to cutoff their funding, expand intelligence sharing, and engage in cyberwarfare to disrupt and disable their propaganda and recruiting
  • Defeat the ideology of radical Islamic terrorism, just as we did in order to win the Cold War.

New screening procedures and enforcement of our immigration laws will:

  • Temporarily suspend immigration from some of the most dangerous and volatile regions of the world that have a history of exporting terrorism.
  • Establish a Commission on Radical Islam to identify and explain to the American public the core convictions and beliefs of Radical Islam, to identify the warning signs of radicalization, and to expose the networks in our society that support radicalization.

Mr. Trump’s Plan To Make America Respected And Safe Again

Peace through strength will be at the center of our foreign policy. We will achieve a stable, peaceful world with less conflict and more common ground.

We will focus on advancing America’s core national interests, promote regional stability, and produce an easing of tensions in the world. We will work with Congress to fully repeal the defense sequester and submit a new budget to rebuild our depleted military.

The Trump plan will rebuild our military, enhance and improve intelligence and cyber capabilities

We will end the current strategy of nation-building and regime change.

And we will ensure our security procedures and refugee policy take into account the security of the American people.

Hillary Clinton Campaign: Trump’s ‘Secret’ Plan To Defeat ISIS Is No Plan At All

Donald Trump has consistently claimed that he has a “secret” plan to defeat ISIS. As it turns out, the secret is that Trump has no plan. Instead, foreign policy experts agree, the ideas Trump has mentioned are dangerous and wrongheaded–and his anti-Muslim rhetoric and proposals are recruiting tools for ISIS and other terror groups.

Trump spent more than a year claiming he had a secret, foolproof plan to defeat ISIS.

  • May 2015: “I know a way that would absolutely give us guaranteed victory. I’m going to say it, I guess I’ll be forced to say it at some time, but I hate to say it.”
  • June 2016: “Trump rebuffed Fox News host Greta Van Susteren’s attempts to extract the details of his ‘foolproof’ plan… ‘If I win, I don’t want the enemy to know what I’m doing. Unfortunately, I’ll probably have to tell at some point”

Turns out, there is no plan.

  • Trump: “Immediately after taking office, I will ask my generals to present to me a plan within 30 days to defeat and destroy ISIS.”
  • Politico: “But on Tuesday night, Trump suggested that he is still in need of a plan.”
  • Washington Post: “Now we know what Trump’s ‘foolproof’ and ‘absolute’ plan for defeating ISIS is — to ask the generals to come up with a plan, quickly.

And foreign policy experts agree: Trump is playing into ISIS’ hands.

  • Why Trump Is the Islamic State’s Dream Candidate: “It is deeply ironic and disturbing that the Islamic State’s dream candidate is posturing as the tough-on-terrorism candidate. If voters can’t see through Trump’s con game, terrorist groups like the Islamic State and al Qaeda will receive an unprecedented helping hand from America’s next president. Imagine what a conspiracy theorist — someone like Donald Trump — would make of that.”
  • Why ISIS is Rooting for Trump: “First, Trump’s anti-Muslim rhetoric plays into ISIS’ narrative of a bipolar world in which the West is at war with Islam. Second, ISIS hopes that Trump will radicalize Muslims in the United States and Europe and inspire them to commit lone-wolf attacks in their home countries. Third, ISIS supporters believe that Trump would be an unstable and irrational leader whose impulsive decision-making would weaken the United States.”
  • Why ISIS Supports Donald Trump: “Trump’s anti-Muslim proposals are likely to inspire and radicalize more violent jihadists in the U.S. and Europe… By demonizing Muslims, he feeds ISIS’s narrative that the U.S. is at war with Islam.”

Donald Trump’s Attacks During Raucous Debate Founded on Falsehoods

Foiled Hostile Takeover in St. Louis: Donald Trump tried to overwhelm the debate by a nonstop barrage of attacks against Hillary Clinton © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Foiled Hostile Takeover in St. Louis: Donald Trump tried to overwhelm the debate by a nonstop barrage of attacks against Hillary Clinton © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

From his wild exaggerations to dangerous falsehoods, Donald Trump continued his pattern of bold-faced lying to millions of viewers during the second Presidential Debate, in St. Louis, October 9 – that is when you could get him to put two sentences together, and not wander off or make utterly outrageous statements. Here are just some of the independent reviews of Trump’s untrue statements on topics including taxes, foreign policy, his own offensive comments and more, compiled by the Hillary for America campaign. We’ve already had a president who lacked any inclination to find out facts, and who lied us into a war.

Trump’s Lies About His Own Offensive Comments to Women:

AP: “Donald Trump, asked whether his early morning tweets directing people to check out a sex tape showed discipline, said: ‘It wasn’t ‘check out a sex tape.’’ THE FACTS: Wrong. Trump told his 12.2 million Twitter followers to check out a sex tape as he criticized a former Miss Universe.”

CNN: “Trump: I didn’t say ‘check out the sex tape’ VERDICT: FALSE”

FactCheck.org: “Trump said he never tweeted ‘check out a sex tape’ in the wee hours of the morning a few days after the first presidential debate. That’s false — he did.”

Huffington Post: “During Debate, Trump Denies Telling People To Check Out A Sex Tape On Twitter. Yeah, well, he literally directed people to check out a sex tape on Twitter.”

NPR: “[DJT:]  I have great respect for women. Nobody has more respect for women that I do. [FACT CHECK:] Trump has had many occasions to make this claim over the course of the campaign, dating back to his tense interaction with Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly during the first Republican primary debate in Cleveland in August 2015, when Kelly reminded him of his history of offensive comments about women. Here is a partial list compiled by PBS.”

Politifact: “Trump said the tweet he sent out ‘wasn’t saying, ‘check out a sex tape’’  but rather to ‘just take a look at’ Machado’s background. That’s ridiculous. While Trump did urge his Twitter followers to check out Machado’s ‘past,’ he literally wrote ‘check out sex tape’ in the tweet. We rate his statement Pants on Fire!”

NPR: “[TRUMP:] No I didn’t say that at all. [FACT CHECK:] He did say that.The exact words were, ‘You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful women — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait.””
Trump’s Lies About the Economy & Taxes:

Huffington Post: “Trump’s $20 Trillion Debt Line Is Ridiculous”

NPR: “[DJT:] We have no growth in this country. There is no growth. [FACT CHECKER:] The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, an international economic organization, evaluated the U.S. economy this summer and concluded: ‘Seven years after the financial crisis, the US economy has rebounded: output has surpassed its pre-crisis peak by 10%, robust private-sector employment gains have sharply reduced unemployment, fiscal sustainability has been largely restored and corporate profits are high.’”

AP: “Trump wrong on Clinton tax claim… DONALD TRUMP: ‘She is raising your taxes, and I am lowering your taxes. …She’s raising everybody’s taxes massively.’ HILLARY CLINTON: ‘He would end up raising taxes on middle-class families’ THE FACTS: Clinton is not raising taxes on ‘everybody.’ Nearly all of Hillary Clinton’s proposed tax increases would affect the wealthiest 5 percent of Americans, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center.”

Buzzfeed Reporter: “Trump says AGAIN that the US has the highest taxes in the world. That’s…untrue.

FactCheck.org: “Trump said of Clinton’s plan, ‘She is raising everybody’s taxes massively.’ Everybody? No. Analyses by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center and the pro-business Tax Foundation both concluded that almost all of the tax increases proposed by Clinton would fall on the top 10 percent of taxpayers. Hardest hit would be the less than 0.1 percent of taxpayers who earn more than $5 million per year.”

Huffington Post: “Note To Trump: This Is How The Senate Works.Trump seems to misunderstand how the Senate works. He accused Clinton of not doing enough to get rid of the carried interest loophole when she was a senator. Clinton noted that she has been in favor of getting rid it for years.”

Huffington Post: “Trump Says He’ll Get Rid Of A Wall Street Loophole. His Tax Plan Says He Won’t.”

New York Times: “Mr. Trump admitted that he used a $916 million loss declared on his 1995 tax returns to avoid paying federal income taxes. But he refused to say how many years he paid no income tax and simultaneously claimed to have paid a ‘tremendous’ amount of taxes. More questions than answers.

New York Times: “Mr. Trump said that growth is “down to 1 percent” and that taxes in the United States are the “highest in the world” Wrong.

New York Times: “Mr. Trump said he would reduce the tax rate on business income to 15 percent. Not exactly.”

Washington Post: “Fact Check: IRS audit doesn’t prohibit Trump from releasing taxes”

Washington Post: “Fact Check: Trump’s wrong on the U.S. being the highest taxed nation”

Trump’s Lies About The Affordable Care Act:

AP: “Trump overstates cost of Obama’s health plan. DONALD TRUMP: Obamacare ‘is going to be one of the biggest line items very shortly.’ THE FACTS: Trump vastly exaggerates the cost of President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act. The cost of the coverage expansion in Obama’s health care law is nowhere near what the government spends on Medicare and Medicaid, for example.”

FactCheck.org: “He also cherry-picked high proposed premium increases in the exchanges, and he said that the law should be replaced with ‘something absolutely much less expensive,’ when repealing the law is expected to increase federal deficits.”

FactCheck.org: “Finally, Trump said that the ACA is ‘unbelievably expensive for our country. … We have to repeal it and replace it with something absolutely much less expensive.’ But the CBO and Joint Committee on Taxation’s latest estimates on the impact of repealing the law find doing away with it would likely increase federal deficits over the 2016-2025 time period.”

Trump’s Lies About Hillary Clinton and Health Care:

New York Times: “Mr. Trump said that Mrs. Clinton “wants to go to a single-payer plan” like the health care system in Canada. Untrue.

NPR: “[DJT:] But she wants to go to single-payer. [FACT CHECKER:] Clinton does not support single-payer. She supports expanding Medicare to people 55 and over, but has not come out in support of a complete overhaul of the health system so that it would be more like Canada or many European health systems.”

Politifact: “Trump says Clinton ‘wants to go to a single-payer plan’ for health care. She has consistently said she would fight efforts to repeal Obamacare and would try to improve it. She said she wants a public option to be ‘possible’ but she has not called for moving to a system of only single payer. Clinton has not called for a single-payer plan. At times, she has praised the health care systems of other countries that have a single-payer plan, but she has not advocated that plan for the United States. We rate Trump’s claim False.”

AP: “Trump wrong on Clinton and health care. DONALD TRUMP: ‘She (Clinton) wants to go to a single-payer plan, which would be a disaster…she wants to go to single-payer, which means the government basically rules everything.’ THE FACTS: It’s Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders — not Clinton — who supports a Canada-style government-run health care system.”

Buzzfeed: “Trump falsely claims Clinton is proposing Canada-style healthcare system.”

FactCheck.org: “Trump used an old GOP scare tactic, wrongly claiming that Clinton wanted to implement a government-run, ‘single-payer,’ health care system, like Canada’s… Clinton supports making Medicare available to those over age 55, and creating a ‘public option,’ or a federal insurance plan, that would compete with private plans on the ACA exchanges. She hasn’t called for a single-payer system.”

Trump’s Lies About Immigration:

Buzzfeed: “Donald Trump claimed that the US doesn’t have borders. ‘We’re going to have borders on our country that we don’t have now,’ Trump said. But enforcement along the US-Mexico border has never been higher.There are currently about 21,000 agents patrolling more than 6,000 miles of the nation’s borders.”

CBS News: “TRUMP: ‘I understand the border. She doesn’t. She wants amnesty for everybody.’… It is not true that Clinton supports ‘amnesty for everybody,’ but she does want to make it easier for people who came here illegally to stay by passing legislation with a path to citizenship.”

Huffington Post: “Trump’s Muslim Ban Is Still On His Website”

New York Times: “Mr. Trump says Mrs. Clinton wants “amnesty for everybody, come on in, come on over.” Not her position.”

NPR: “[DJT:]  […] we are letting people into this country that are going to cause problems and crime like you’ve never seen. We’re also leading drugs for through our southern border at a record clip. At a record clip and it shouldn’t be allowed to happen. [FACT CHECKER:] Apprehensions at the Southwest border—a proxy for attempted crossings—have dropped by 79 percent from the peak in 2000. The Pew Research Center reports more Mexicans left the US than entered between 2009 and 2014.”

NPR: “[DJT:] ICE just endorsed me. They’ve never endorsed a  presidential candidate. [FACT CHECKER:] The federal bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement did not make an endorsement. A union of immigration and customs officers voted to endorse Trump.”

Washington Post: “Trump overstates, by a lot, when he said Syrian refugees are coming to the United States by the “hundreds of thousands.”

New York Times: “Mr. Trump said we have hundreds of thousands of people pouring into the United States from places like Syria, and we have no idea who they are. Way off.

Buzzfeed: “Trump’s said the US took in ‘tens of thousands’ of Syrian refugees.That is not accurate.

CBS News: “Donald Trump says ‘tens of thousands’ of people from Syria are coming to the U.S. TRUMP STATEMENT: ‘We are going to areas like Syria, where they’re coming in by the tens of thousands.’ FACT CHECK: False.”

Trump’s Lies About Muslims and Terrorism:

Buzzfeed: “Trump falsely claimed that Muslims in the United States are not reporting terror plots to the authorities. Trump cited San Bernardino where he said there were ‘bombs on the floor’ of the suspects’ apartment. There has never been any evidence that this was the case.”

CBS News: “Donald Trump claims that ‘many people’ saw bombs at the apartment of the San Bernardino shooters. TRUMP STATEMENT: ‘We have to be sure that Muslims come in and report when they see something going on. When they see hatred going on, they have to report it. As an example: San Bernardino, many people saw the bombs all over the apartment of the two people that killed 14 and wounded many, many people.’ FACT CHECK: False. To this day, no one has said they’ve seen bombs in the apartment of the San Bernardino shooters’ apartment.”

CBS News: “Donald Trump says Hillary Clinton will not say the phrase ‘radical Islam.’ TRUMP STATEMENT: ‘When there’s a problem, you have to state what the problem is or at least say the name. She won’t say the name and President Obama won’t say the name.’ FACT CHECK: False. Clinton used the term in June during an interview on NBC News’ ‘Today Show.’”

CNN: “Trump: ‘Many people saw the bombs all over the apartment’ VERDICT: FALSE”

FactCheck.org: “In stressing that Muslims need to notify the police of wrongdoing in their communities, Trump claimed without evidence that ‘many people saw the bombs all over the apartment of the two people that killed 14 and wounded many, many people’ in San Bernardino last year.”

Huffington Post: “Fact Check: Trump’s Claim That ‘Many People Saw The Bombs’ In San Bernardino Is False”

New York Times: “Mr. Trump said Mrs. Clinton has never used the phrase ‘radical Islamic terrorism.’ Just flat wrong.”

New York Times: “Mr. Trump said ‘many people saw’ bombs all over the apartment of a couple who committed the terrorist attack in San Bernardino, Calif. Not true.”

Politifact: “Trump said of Clinton, ‘These are radical Islamic terrorists and she won’t even mention the word.’ After the Orlando shooting, Clinton said she had no problem saying ‘radical Islamism’ which is similar but not the same as ‘radical Islamic terrorism.’ She has also said that leaders should be careful not to demonize the religion of Islam, and that the United States needs specific strategies to fight ISIS. We rate this claim Mostly False.”

Washington Post: “Fact Check: Trump’s false claim on San Bernardino”

Huffington Post: “Don’t Believe Trump: No Syrian Refugees In The U.S. Have Been Linked To Terror”

Trump’s Lies About the Iraq War:

AP: “DONALD TRUMP: ‘I would not have had our troops in Iraq.’ Trump has repeatedly said in the campaign he opposed the Iraq War before it started. But the facts are clear: He did not.”

Buzzfeed: “Trump: ‘I was against the war in Iraq.’ No. He wasn’t.”

CBS News: “Donald Trump says he was against the war in Iraq, and that suggestions he was not have been debunked. TRUMP STATEMENT: ‘I was against the war in Iraq,’ Trump said, as he did in the first debate with Clinton. ‘It has not been debunked.’ FACT CHECK: False and false.

CNN: “Trump: ‘I would not have had our people in Iraq.’ VERDICT: FALSE”

CNN: “Trump: My opposition to the Iraq War “has not been debunked”VERDICT: FALSE”

FactCheck.org: “And finally Trump pins too much blame for the rise in ISIS — whose origin dates back to the Bush administration — on the troop withdrawal…”

Huffington Post: “Donald Trump Continues To Lie About The Iraq War”

FactCheck.org: “Trump repeated that he ‘was against the war in Iraq’ and claimed that this ‘has not been debunked.’ But we have found no evidence that he was against the Iraq War before it began.”

Washington Post: “Fact Check: Yes, Trump’s Iraq War claim has been debunked.”

NPR: “[DJT]: I was against the war in Iraq. [FACT CHECKER:] There is no evidence to support this claim.”

Trump’s Lies About Libya:

FactCheck.org: “Trump conveniently leaves out that he posted a YouTube video in February 2011 voicing support for U.S. intervention in Libya to remove Moammar Gadhafi from power, and that he told CNN in a 2007 interview that the U.S. should ‘declare victory [in Iraq] and leave … [T]his is a total catastrophe and you might as well get out now, because you just are wasting time.’”

FactCheck.org: “It’s been half a year, and Trump is still making the false claim that ‘ISIS has a good chunk’ of Libyan oil fields. We first flagged this statement in April, when an expert on Libya’s oil operations told us there’s no evidence that the Islamic State has control of any oil fields in that country.”

Washington Post: “Fact Check: Trump’s wrong on ISIS and Libyan oil”

AP: “Trump wrong that IS is taking Libyan oil. DONALD TRUMP: ‘ISIS has a good chunk of their oil,’ referring to Libya. THE FACTS: Not quite. While it is true that the Islamic State group has targeted Libya’s oil fields and has aspired to grab some of the country’s oil resources, as it did in Syria, there is no evidence that it is reaping any revenue from Libyan oil. The prospect of the extremist group seizing Libyan oil is one reason the U.S. has conducted limited airstrikes against the Islamic State in Libya, where it now has a very small presence.”

FactCheck.org: “Trump said that ‘Ambassador [Chris] Stevens sent 600 requests for help’ before he was killed in an attack on the U.S. diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya, in September 2012. But as the Washington Post Fact Checker reported, not all 600 came from Stevens, nor were they all requests for security upgrades, as it may have appeared to those watching or listening to the debate.”

New York Times: “Mr. Trump said Clinton ignored 600 requests for increased security from J. Christopher Stevens, the ambassador to Libya, and only communicated with Sidney Blumenthal. Extremely misleading”

Washington Post: “THE FACT CHECKER | Trump made a ludicrous claimthat U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens made 600 requests for help before he perished in the attack on a U.S. diplomatic facility in Benghazi.”

Huffington Post: “Clinton refused to answer Stevens’ calls for help, Trump claimed…  However, repeated GOP-led investigations into the Benghazi incident have found no evidence to blame Clinton for the deaths of Stevens and three other Americans there in a 2012 attack.”

Lies About Iran:

CBS News: “Donald Trump claimed that the Iran nuclear deal meant the United States paid Iran $150 billion. TRUMP STATEMENT: ‘When I look at the Iran deal and how bad it is for us, it’s a one-sided transaction where we’re giving back $150 billion dollars to a terrorist state.’ FACT CHECK: False.

CNN: “Trump says US is giving $150 billion to Iran REALITY CHECK: FALSE”

Washington Post: “Fact Check: Trump’s claim that Iran got $150 billion from the United States. THE FACTS: Trump always makes it sound like this is U.S. taxpayer money — and he always uses a too-high estimate.”

Trump’s Lies About Syria:

Buzzfeed: “Trump falsely declared that ‘Aleppo has already fallen.’”

Huffington Post: “Meanwhile, he added, only Assad’s coalition is fighting ISIS.In fact, Assad and his allies have focused on targeting civilians opposed to his rule and rebels who remain embedded among them ― allowing extremist militants to spread for years and control much of the country.”

New York Times: “Mr. Trump accused Mrs. Clinton of being there for President Obama’s “line in the sand” in Syria. She said she wasn’t. Trump is wrong.”

New York Times: “Mr. Trump said Syria, Russia and Iran are fighting the Islamic State. Mostly misleading.”

NPR: “[DJT:] I think that it basically has fallen. OK? It basically has fallen. [FACT CHECKER:] Aleppo has not fallen to the Syrian government.”

New York Times: “Mr. Trump said that the United States signed a “peace treaty” to bring an end to the civil war in Syria. Not even close.”

Trump’s Lies About Russia:

Huffington Post: “Trump said he has no special ties to Russia, despite his campaign’s multiple ties to the country’s business and his stated admiration for Russian leader Vladimir Putin.”

NPR: “[TRUMP:] I don’t deal there and no businesses there have no loans from Russia. [FACT CHECKER:] Trump may not have current business ties with Russia, but he has in fact tried to engage his business interests with Russia since the 1980’s.”

Buzzfeed Reporter: “Trump just said ‘we don’t know if it is the Russians doing the hacking.’ Ummm… no.”

NPR: [DJT:]  But I notice anytime anything wrong happens they like to say the Russians we don’t know if it’s Russian. [FACT CHECKER:] The U.S. intelligence community and Department of Homeland Security said Friday that Russia is behind this year’s campaign of hacks and the release of information related to the 2016 campaign.”

New York Times: “Mr. Trump said “maybe there is no hacking,” in response to Mrs. Clinton’s claim that Russians are engaged in an unprecedented effort to influence the election — on Mr. Trump’s behalf. Hacking is endemic.”

Trump’s Lies About Clinton’s Emails:

FactCheck.org: “Trump twisted the facts when he directly addressed Clinton about her use of a private email system while secretary of state. ‘You get a subpoena and after getting the subpoena you delete 33,000 emails. And then you acid wash them — or bleach them, as you would say — a very expensive process,’ Trump said…. there is no evidence that Clinton knew that the emails were deleted after the subpoena was issued.”

Trump’s Lies About Birtherism:

FactCheck.org: “Trump is wrong about Patti Solis Doyle, Clinton’s 2008 campaign manager. Solis Doyle has said that a ‘rogue volunteer coordinator’ in Iowa was immediately fired when the campaign found out that the aide forwarded an email promoting the birther conspiracy.”

FactCheck.org: “Trump: ‘Sidney Blumenthal — he’s another real winner that you have — and he’s the one that got this started’ As for Blumenthal, he has denied a claim made by McClatchy’s former bureau chief James Asher that Blumenthal, a senior adviser to Clinton’s 2008 campaign, encouraged McClatchy to chase the story of Obama’s birth… Other than that, there is no clear evidence to support Asher’s account.”

NPR: “[TRUMP:] Well, you owe the president an apology because, as you know very well, your campaign Sidney Blumenthal, he’s another real winner that you have. And he’s the one who got this started along with your campaign manager and they were on television just two weeks ago he was saying likely that. [FACT CHECKER:] We have fact-checked Trump’s birther claims previously (several times) online and on air. […]  As we noted, ‘There’s a big difference between what fringe supporters of Clinton said at the time, who were disavowed by the candidate, and the campaign Trump himself undertook in the subsequent years.’”