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herding cats

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Member since: Mon Nov 18, 2013, 03:56 PM
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GOP senators unveil bill to give Congress control of consumer bureau budget

Source: The Hill

More than a dozen Republican senators are backing a bill to give Congress greater control and oversight of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) will introduce a bill Wednesday to let Congress control CFPB’s budget, his office told The Hill on Wednesday.

Called the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Accountability Act of 2017, the bill would place CFPB under the congressional appropriations process, letting lawmakers control its budget. That would give Congress the ability to drastically limit the scope and size of the bureau, regardless of who controls it.

The CFPB, opened in 2011 per a section of Dodd-Frank mandating its creation, is currently independently funded by the Federal Reserve.

Read more: http://thehill.com/policy/finance/319681-gop-senators-unveil-bill-to-make-congress-control-consumer-bureau-budget

Exclusive: U.S. arrests Mexican immigrant in Seattle covered by Obama program

Source: Reuters

U.S. authorities have arrested an immigrant from Mexico who was brought to the United States illegally as a child and later given a work permit during the Obama administration in what could be the first detention of its kind under President Donald Trump.

Daniel Ramirez Medina, a 23-year-old with no criminal record, was taken into custody last week at his father's home in Seattle by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers. The officers arrived at the home to arrest the man's father, though court documents did no make clear the reason the father was taken into custody.

Ramirez, now in custody in Tacoma, Washington, was granted temporary permission to live and work legally in the United States under a program called the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, established in 2012 by Democratic President Obama, according to a court filing.

The program protects from deportation 750,000 people who were brought to the United States illegally as children, sometimes called the "dreamers," and gives them the temporary right to work legally in the United States.

Read more: http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN15T307

US Allies In Europe Have Literally No Idea Whats Going On With The Trump Administration

“It’s a wake-up call to European leaders that counting on America isn’t currently a smart policy,” one European intelligence official said after the sudden resignation of the US national security adviser.

BRUSSELS — Already concerned by the Trump administration’s erratic approach to the trans-Atlantic alliance, European security services have been shaken by the resignation of US national security adviser Michael Flynn over allegations he lied about his contacts with Russian diplomats, amid increasing concern that the new US administration is pursuing an uncomfortably close relationship with NATO’s foremost rival, Russia.

Flynn’s resignation Monday night immediately sent European officials into a frenzy of attempting to determine what the change of the president’s top national security adviser would mean as the Atlantic alliance has already been struggling with understanding how the new president will approach a litany of complex European situations from the expansion of NATO to the war against ISIS to concerns about an expansionist Russia.

“I was hoping you could tell me what the fuck is going on over there,” said one European Union intelligence official who, like the other officials contacted, declined to speak about such a diplomatically sensitive situation on the record.

“There’s no guide for handling this sort of situation, happening with such an important and powerful ally,” the official said. “If anything, it’s a wake-up call to European leaders that counting on America isn’t currently a smart policy. Of course this is exactly what Putin wants — to destabilize the Atlantic alliance — but I have to counsel my policymakers the best I can, and right now it’s ‘Prepare to handle some crises without US support.’”


GOP bill would eliminate Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Source: The Hill

Two Republican lawmakers introduced Tuesday a bill to eliminate the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the controversial watchdog agency long targeted by the GOP.

The bill from Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Texas) would repeal Title X of the Dodd-Frank Act, which established the CFPB.

Republicans have long sought to eliminate or drastically reform the CFPB, but Cruz and Ratcliffe’s approach goes further than current GOP proposals to reshape the bureau.

Cruz said in a statement his bill “gives Congress the opportunity to free consumers and small businesses from the CFPB’s regulatory blockades and financial activism, which stunt economic growth.”

“While there’s much more to do to scale back the harmful regulatory impositions of Dodd-Frank, this legislation takes a critical step in the right direction,” said Cruz.

Read more: http://thehill.com/policy/finance/319517-gop-bill-would-eliminate-consumer-financial-protection-bureau

Kellyanne Conway Claims She Doesnt Know Who Retweeted A White Nationalist From Her Twitter Account

Kellyanne Conway wasn’t really feeling the love Tuesday morning, after Today host Matt Lauer told her her responses made no sense when she appeared to dodge his repeated questions about Gen. Mike Flynn’s resignation as the National Security Adviser.



Conway not only retweeted Lib Hypocrisy’s tweet, but also told the Twitter user, “Love you back” and wished her “Hapless Haters” a happy Valentine’s Day.

Conway told BuzzFeed News on Tuesday, “I don’t know who had access to my account."

More here: https://www.buzzfeed.com/tasneemnashrulla/kellyanne-conway-said-love-you-to-a-white-nationalist-twitte?utm_term=.timwwPZJwM#.sywBBrmEBK

Roger Stone: Priebus's 'purge' of Flynn is 'Pearl Harbor' for Trump loyalists

President Trump adviser Roger Stone tweeted Tuesday that the "purge" of former national security advisor Michael Flynn is "Pearl Harbor" for Trump loyalists.

Stone blamed White House chief of staff Reince Priebus for Flynn's resignation after just 24 days on the job.

"Reince's purge of Flynn a 'Pearl Harbor' for Trump loyalists. Hope the midget is ready to rumble," wrote Stone.

Stone's tweet comes as Breitbart News, the populist right-wing website once led by President Trump’s chief strategist, Stephen Bannon, published a scathing report on Tuesday stating that Priebus was responsible for the administration's rocky start while speculating that his future in the administration may also be short.


Trump signs repeal of transparency rule for oil companies

Source: the Hill

President Trump signed legislation Tuesday to repeal a controversial regulation that would have required energy companies to disclose their payments to foreign governments.

The legislation is the first time in 16 years that the Congressional Review Act (CRA) has been used to repeal a regulation, and only the second time in the two decades that act has been law.

It is the start of one front in an aggressive deregulatory effort that the Trump administration and the GOP Congress are undertaking to roll back Obama-era rules on fossil fuel companies, financial institutions and other businesses that they say have suffered for the last eight years.

The resolution repeals a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rule written under the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law.

It was meant to fight corruption in resource-rich countries by mandating that companies on United States stock exchanges disclose the royalties and other payments that oil, natural gas, coal and mineral companies make to governments.

Read more: http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/319488-trump-signs-repeal-of-transparency-rule-for-oil-companies

Russian lawmakers rush to the defense of Trumps ex-national security adviser

MOSCOW — Leading Russian lawmakers rushed to defend President Trump’s former national security adviser on Tuesday after he resigned amid furor over his misleading statements to senior White House officials, including Vice President Pence, about his contacts with Russia.

The heads of the foreign affairs committees in Russia’s upper and lower houses of parliament chalked up Michael Flynn’s resignation to a dark campaign of Russophobia in Washington and said it would undermine relations between the White House and the Kremlin.

Flynn was accused of holding discussions over the U.S. sanctions regime against Russia with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak before Trump was sworn in as president last month.


Kurt Eichenwald‏ @kurteichenwald
Russian lawmakers are outraged that Flynn is out. That in itself is troubling.

With Michael Flynns Resignation, a New Focus on the Logan Act

What is the Logan Act?

The Logan Act is a 1799 statute that bars private citizens from interfering with diplomatic relations between the United States and foreign governments. It makes it a felony, punishable by a fine or imprisonment of up to three years, if an American citizen, without government authorization, interacts “with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States.”

Does the act apply to a president-elect and his transition team?
As a preliminary matter, it remains unclear whether then-President-elect Trump — as opposed to Mr. Pence — knew about Mr. Flynn’s conversations with the Russian ambassador. (After the announcement by the Russian president, Vladimir V. Putin, that he would not expel American officials in response to new sanctions because there would soon be a different president, Mr. Trump responded with a Twitter post that said, “Great move on delay (by V. Putin) — I always knew he was very smart!”)

But even if Mr. Trump sanctioned the conversation, on its face the Logan Act appears to apply to a president-elect and his top aides, said Laurence Tribe, a Harvard Law School constitutional law professor.

A president-elect is not an official of the United States,” Mr. Tribe said. “There is no reason why the Logan Act would not apply to the president-elect since it applies to all private citizens, and the people working on the transition are all working in a private-citizen capacity. They have not taken the oath, so they are covered by the act — to the extent that matters.”


Sen Blunt: Exhaustive investigation into Trump-Russia connections needed following Flynn resignation

GOP Senate Intel Member: Exhaustive investigation into Trump-Russia connections needed following Flynn resignation

(CNN)Republican Sen. Roy Blunt, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, on Tuesday called for an exhaustive investigation into connections between President Donald Trump and Russia and said the Intelligence Committee should immediately speak with former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

Flynn resigned Monday evening amid revelations that he misled Vice President Mike Pence about conversations he had in December with Russia's ambassador to the US about sanctions placed on Russia. Pence had defended Flynn on television and denied he discussed sanctions after initial reports of the conversations.

"I think everybody needs that investigation to happen," Blunt said on KTRS radio. "And the Senate Intelligence Committee, again that I serve on, has been given the principle responsibility to look into this, and I think that we should look into it exhaustively so that at the end of this process, nobody wonders whether there was a stone left unturned, and shouldn't reach conclusions before you have the information that you need to have to make those conclusions."

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