President Trump calls mass shooting at club 'terrible,' says he's been briefed

President Donald Trump responded to a mass shooting at a Southern California music club, calling it "terrible" and saying he has been "fully briefed" on the incident.

At least 12 people were killed and 10 others injured when a gunman burst into the packed club in Thousand Oaks, California, a suburb of Los Angeles, tossing smoke grenades and firing dozens of rounds, witnesses and authorities said. The lone suspect was also found dead inside the Borderline Bar and Grill that was hosting a college night on Wednesday night, police said. Authorities are working to determine his identity and motive.

I have been fully briefed on the terrible shooting in California. Law Enforcement and First Responders, together with the FBI, are on scene. 13 people, at this time, have been reported dead. Likewise, the shooter is dead, along with the first police officer to enter the bar....

 

November 08, 2018

Sources: ABC News

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  •  The Note: Decision time for diminished GOP in House

    The Note: Decision time for diminished GOP in House

    of Republican politics that he dominates, are about to get some new marking points. </p><p> That’s part of the backdrop against which a Trumpier Republican conference chooses between Kevin McCarthy and Jim Jordan to lead its ranks in the House. Trump has stayed out of the contest publicly, but many of the outside groups that help power the Trump agenda have taken sides, even as McCarthy remains the odds-on favorite for the post. </p><p> Before Republicans surrender their majority, Trump could test his allies on Capitol Hill with a possible government shutdown over border-wall funding. </p><p> Democrats have felt better since Election Day, which is why, perhaps, they are willing to start rumbling about 2020 already, just one week after voters went to the polls. </p><p> Priorities USA, a powerful, Washington, Democrat Super PAC held a briefing with reporters Tuesday afternoon to spin and chart out their initial plans for the next, upcoming election cycle already. </p><p> West Virginia State Sen. Richard Ojeda, a Democrat, flew to the nation’s capital this week to formally announce his presidential run. And Congressman John Delaney had a big New York Times spread. </p><p> With the list of potential Democratic presidential contenders rapidly expanding, prognosticators will be leery about positing early who might catch fire. </p><p> Former independent New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, told The Associated Press he is now a Democrat for good and would be deciding before February whether he might run. </p><p> Sen. Bernie Sanders had his former campaign manager out Tuesday speaking on behalf of his wife and trying to shut down a potential controversy surrounding her previous work. </p><p> On the Republican side, far from just a side note, outgoing Ohio Gov. John Kasich circulated a schedule of events he was attending in New Hampshire this week as he meets “with old and new supporters.” </p><p> So, in case there was any question, 2020 started ... yesterday. </p><p> While Republicans in a number of outstanding House races are teetering on the edge of defeat, Rep. Bruce Poliquin, R-Maine, isn't going down without a fight. </p><p> Poliquin filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court Monday arguing that because he received the most votes in Maine's 2nd Congressional District last week, he should be declared the winner. </p><p> It seems simple enough until you remember that Maine -- following a drawn-out battle involving two statewide referenda -- utilizes ranked-choice voting in its federal races. Because Polquin didn't receive a 50 percent-plus-one majority, he did not win and the votes of the election's non-competitive independent candidates will now be transferred to their supporters' second and third choices in the race until the threshold is surpassed. </p><p> Standing to benefit is Poliquin's Democratic challenger Jared Golden, who only trails the Republican by about 2,000 votes and who it is widely assumed is the major party candidate preferred by most independent voters, hence Poliquin's lawsuit. </p><p> Challenges to the system have failed in the past and the will of Mainers clearly sides with ranked-choice, so it is unclear if Poliquin has a chance to cut the vote off at one round. For its part, the Maine secretary of state’s office -- named as the defendant in the lawsuit -- is continuing to scan and certify ballots as if the second-round tabulation will continue. </p>

    1 November 14, 2018
  • Theresa May's Brexit deal: everything you need to know

    Theresa May's Brexit deal: everything you need to know

    ? And will it get through cabinet and parliament?</p><p>Theresa May’s cabinet meets later on Wednesday to approve or reject the text of a draft withdrawal agreement drawn up this week in Brussels by EU and UK negotiators two-and-a-half years after Britain voted to leave the bloc.</p><p>Here is a brief guide to what – as far as we know – the agreement says, which parts of it may prove controversial (and why), how likely the prime minister is to get the deal through her cabinet and then parliament, and what could happen next.</p><p>Think of it as the separation agreement between the UK and the EU. Running to a rumoured 400 to 600 pages, it covers three main areas:</p><p>Britain’s financial settlement with the EU to meet agreed commitments.</p><p>The post-Brexit rights of EU citizens in the UK and British citizens in the EU.</p><p>The agreement also includes a much shorter (and non-binding) political declaration, probably of about 15 pages, outlining what the two sides see as their desired future trading relationship – which remains to be negotiated.</p><p>While some of the detail took longer, the UK and EU agreed reasonably quickly on the so-called divorce bill and citizens’ rights (although not to the satisfaction of many of the citizens concerned).</p><p>Ultimately, the border is supposed to become a non-issue under the terms of the comprehensive free trade agreement the two sides are expected to sign at some stage after Britain’s departure on 29 March next year.</p><p>But because this agreement may well not be negotiated by the end of the transition period in December 2020, the EU insisted on a “backstop” arrangement to avoid a hard border until a free trade agreement came into effect. The row over the form this backstop should take is what has prevented the withdrawal agreement being signed until now.</p><p>For months, Britain rejected the EU’s proposed backstop – in effect, keeping Northern Ireland in the customs union and single market – because it would require customs checks in the Irish Sea and other arrangements meaning Northern Ireland was treated differently to the rest of the UK.</p><p>But the EU also rejected Britain’s suggestion that the whole of the UK should stay in a de facto customs union with the EU, mainly because the government wanted to be able to withdraw from such an arrangement unilaterally and when it chose (which, for the EU, meant it could not be considered a full backstop).</p><p>The solution appears to involve concessions on both sides. On the EU side, the chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, has accepted the idea of a whole-UK customs union with the EU, satisfying the UK’s demands that its territorial integrity must be preserved.</p><p>But in return, Britain must agree that it will not be allowed to exit the backstop unless and until the EU agrees there is no prospect of a return to a hard border. In addition, it will have to accept special “deeper” customs arrangements for Northern Ireland, and the EU’s so-called “level playing-field” conditions for the whole of the UK.</p><p>These address member states’ concerns that de facto customs union membership without the obligations of the single market could give the UK an unfair advantage, so will require Britain to observe EU rules on, for example, state aid, competition, the environment, tax and labour market rules.</p><p>Hardly. Conservative Brexiters are aghast at the prospect of Britain potentially being “trapped” forever in a customs union with the EU – so prevented from striking independent trade deals – and appalled at having to continue to accept EU regulations to boot (hence Boris Johnson’s dismissal of the deal as “vassal state stuff”).</p><p>The Northern Ireland unionists of the DUP – on whose votes in Westminster the government relies for its majority – also fear “deeper” customs arrangements and additional checks on livestock and food crossing the Irish Sea breach the party’s red lines on identical treatment for Northern Ireland.</p><p>First, the prime minister must get the withdrawal agreement through cabinet, whose leave-supporting members need to decide whether they want to put their money where their mouths are. If she succeeds, an emergency EU summit could then be held, most likely on 25 November, to seal the deal.</p><p>Then it has to be got through parliament earlier rather than later in December. Many observers believe it will fall at this hurdle, resulting either in a challenge to May’s leadership, a general election, or even a second referendum (with staying in the EU still theoretically an option, although that would mean extending article 50).</p><p>But even if she and her agreement survive, the government will have to decide before June 2020 whether it wants to extend the transition period, fall into the Northern Ireland backstop arrangement or enter a permanent customs union – and after that, seal a future trade deal on which the two sides remain far apart.</p>

    1 November 14, 2018
  •  School, police investigating photo of students posing in apparent Nazi salute

    School, police investigating photo of students posing in apparent Nazi salute

    gating a photo of a group of mostly white high school boys giving what appears to be the Nazi salute after it drew strong backlash on social media. </p><p> The image of students in the Baraboo School District was posted on the @GoBaraboo parody account on Sunday. </p><p> The tweet has since been taken down, but police and school officials promised to investigate. The photo in question is from last spring, according to District Superintendent Lori Mueller. </p><p>The Baraboo Police Department is aware of a controversial photo of a group of high school students that has been posted to social media. Officers are assisting the Baraboo School District with their investigation into this matter.</p><p> The photo drew widespread disapproval, including from Wisconsin Gov.-elect Tony Evers and the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum in Poland. </p><p> “The photographer told us to raise our hands kind of in a way, and I knew at that point that some my classmates are very immature," he said in a separate interview. "So didn’t want to do that, and I saw what was happening and I felt so upset.” </p><p> "There was nothing intended in any way shape or form to simulate anything that was offensive to anyone," Gust told the AP. "If there's any error, it was me in timing the shot." </p><p> Jonathan Schieber, a senior who appears in the photo, told ABC News there was no discussion of any racist aspect to the photo when it was taken. It was only after the photo garnered social media attention over the weekend that he started to hear about it. Schieber, who is black, was singled out due to his race, though he had both arms at his side in the photo. </p><p> "Somebody had made a meme or something, saying, 'We even got the black kid to throw it up,'" Schieber told ABC News. "I couldn't go nowhere without people being like, 'Are you that kid from the picture? Everybody was sharing it, talking about racial profiling. I went to school on Monday and people were trying to take pictures with me -- you're going viral, all that stuff. </p><p> "I left school because I was not having it," he added. </p><p> "To anyone that was hurt I sincerely apologize. To those who have harmed them, we as society often ignore them I have chosen not to do that. YOU ARE JERKS! Grow up! Be kind, Be gentle, Be civil!" </p><p> ABC News has reached out to several other students in the photo who were identified through social media.</p>

    1 November 14, 2018

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