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Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley - USA News

Defiant in the face of widespread criticism, President Donald Trump renewed his belligerent call for four Democratic congresswomen of color to get out of the U.S. “right now,” cementing his position as the most willing U.S. leader in generations to stoke the discord that helped send him to the White House. Content to gamble that a sizable chunk of the electorate embraces his tweets that have been widely denounced as racist, the president made clear that he has no qualms about exploiting racial divisions once again. “It doesn’t concern me because many people agree with me,” Donald Trump said Monday at the White House. “A lot of people love it, by the way.” The episode served notice that Trump is willing to again rely on incendiary rhetoric on issues of race and immigration to preserve his political base in the leadup to the 2020 election. There was near unanimous condemnation from Democrats for Trump’s comments and a rumble of discontent from a subset of Republicans — but notably not from the party’s congressional leaders. Republican Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah, the party’s White House nominee in 2012 and now one of the president’s most vocal GOP critics, said Trump’s comments were “destructive, demeaning, and disunifying.” Far from backing down, Trump on Monday dug in on comments he had initially made a day earlier on Twitter that if lawmakers “hate our country,” they can go back to their “broken and crime-infested” countries. His remarks were directed at four congresswomen: Reps. IlhanHere's the full story.

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Donald Trump vs Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez - US Today Politics News

Starkly injecting race into his criticism of liberal Democrats, President Donald Trump said four congresswomen of color should go back to the “broken and crime infested” countries they came from, ignoring the fact that all of the women are American citizens and three were born in the U.S. His attack drew a searing condemnation from Democrats who labeled the remarks racist and breathtakingly divisive. Following a familiar script, Republicans remained largely silent after Trump’s Sunday morning broadsides against the four women. But the president’s nativist tweets caused Democrats to set aside their internal rifts to rise up in a united chorus against the president. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Trump wants to “make America white again.” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, after jousting for days with Pelosi, said Trump “can’t conceive of an America that includes us.” Trump, who has a long history of making racist remarks, was almost certainly referring to Ocasio-Cortez and her House allies in what’s become known as “the squad.” The others are Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan. Only Omar, from Somalia, is foreign-born. Ocasio-Cortez swiftly denounced his remarks . “Mr. President, the country I ‘come from,’ & the country we all swear to, is the United States,” she tweeted, adding that “You rely on a frightened America for your plunder.” Omar also addressed herself directly to Trump in a tweet, writing: “You are stoking white nationalism (because) you are angry that people like us areHere's the full story.

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Donald Trump Campaigning - USA News Headlines

A nationwide immigration enforcement operation targeting people who are in the United States illegally is expected to begin this weekend after it was postponed last month by President Donald Trump, according to two administration officials and immigrant activists. The operation, which has sparked outrage and concern among immigrant-rights advocates, would target people with final deportation orders, including families whose immigration cases were fast-tracked by judges in 10 major cities, including Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Miami. “Our communities have been in constant fear,” Estela Vara, a Chicago-area organizer said Thursday at a rally outside the city’s Immigration and Custom Enforcement offices where some activists chanted “Immigration Not Deportation!” The sweep remains in flux and could begin later, according to the administration officials, who were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity. Still, activists ramped up efforts to prepare by bolstering know-your-rights pocket guides, circulating information about hot-lines and planning public demonstrations. Vigils outside of detention centers were set for Friday, to be followed by protests Saturday in Miami and Chicago. The operation is similar to ones conducted regularly since 2003 that often produce hundreds of arrests. It is slightly unusual to target families, as opposed to immigrants with criminal histories, but it’s not unprecedented. The Obama and Trump administrations have targeted families in previous operations. But this latest effort is notable because of the politics swirling around it. Trump announced on Twitter last month that the sweep would mark the beginning of aHere's the full story.

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Mohammad Javad Zarif, Mohammed Javad Zarif - Iran Politics News Headlines

The United States has decided not to impose sanctions on Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif for now, two sources familiar with the matter said on Thursday, in a sign Washington may be holding a door open for diplomacy. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on June 24 had said Zarif would be blacklisted that week, an unusual public stance because the United States typically does not preview such decisions to keep its targets from moving assets out of U.S. jurisdiction. Blacklisting Iran’s chief negotiator would also be unusual because it could impede any U.S. effort to use diplomacy to resolve its disagreements with Tehran over Iran’s nuclear programme, regional activities and missile testing. The sources did not give specific reasons for the decision, which came after two months in which U.S.-Iranian tensions have soared because of attacks on tankers in the Gulf that the United States blames on Iran, despite its denials, and Iran’s downing of a U.S. drone that prompted preparations for a U.S. retaliatory air strike that was called off minutes before it was due to hit. “Cooler heads prevailed. We … saw it as not necessarily helpful,” said one source familiar with the matter who spoke on condition of anonymity, saying U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had opposed designating Zarif “for the time being.” In a sign of how close Washington came to taking action, the U.S. Treasury internally circulated a draft press release announcing sanctions on the Iranian foreign minister. Zarif is expected to attend aHere's the full story.

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Jim Mattis - USA News Today

When he resigned as defense secretary last December, Jim Mattis thought it might take two months to install a successor. That seemed terribly long at the time. Seven months later, the U.S. still has no confirmed defense chief even with the nation facing potential armed conflict with Iran. That’s the longest such stretch in Pentagon history. There is also no confirmed deputy defense secretary, and other significant senior civilian and military Pentagon positions are in limbo, more than at any recent time. The causes are varied, but this leadership vacuum has nonetheless begun to make members of Congress and others uneasy, creating a sense that something is amiss in a critical arm of the government at a time of global uncertainty. William Cohen, a former Republican senator who served as defense secretary during President Bill Clinton’s second term, says U.S. allies — “and even our foes” — expect more stability than this within the U.S. defense establishment. “It is needlessly disruptive to have a leadership vacuum for so long at the Department of Defense as the department prepares for its third acting secretary in less than a year,” Cohen told The Associated Press. He said he worries about the cumulative effect of moving from one acting secretary to another while other key positions lack permanent officials. “There will inevitably be increasing uncertainty regarding which officials have which authority, which undermines the very principle of civilian control of the military,” Cohen said. “In addition, other countries — both allies and adversariesHere's the full story.

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Nancy Pelosi - Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez - USA NEWS HEADLINES

At a pivotal moment Wednesday, Speaker Nancy Pelosi stood before House Democrats with a lofty message and a stark warning. The battle-born leader implored her majority, after days of high-profile public infighting, to focus on common goals — including defeating President Donald Trump — and to silence the sniping that threatens their fragile hold on power. The lengthy closed-door session underscored the broader divisions between her centrist and liberal members — and between Pelosi and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez with her “squad” of star-power freshmen — that are testing party unity and reshaping Democrats ahead of the 2020 election. “Without that unity, we are playing completely into the hands of the other people,” Pelosi said, according to a person who was in the meeting room but not authorized to talk publicly about the internal discussion. “We’re a family and we have our moments,” Pelosi told colleagues. “You got a complaint? You come and talk to me about it. But do not tweet about our members and expect us to think that that is just OK.” Then came the very Pelosi-like hammer to those who may want to publicly attack the members who make up her majority: “Think twice,” she said. “Actually, don’t think twice. Think once.” Ocasio-Cortez arrived late to the session and did not speak, according to a second person who attended the session. But she didn’t need to. AOC, as she is called, had already delivered her own lengthy pre-buttal to The New Yorker in which she decried theHere's the full story.

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Nancy Pelosi - Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez - USA NEWS

They don’t talk to each other much, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. But they’re lately speaking at one another in a way that threatens party unity and underscores broader tensions reshaping the Democrats. Their power struggle has spilled open in what could be a momentary blip or a foreshadowing of divisions to come. It started with a rare public rebuke — Pelosi chiding AOC, as she’s called, in a newspaper interview; AOC responding pointedly on Twitter — that’s now challenging the House agenda and rippling into the 2020 presidential campaign. A new test will come this week on a must-pass defense bill that the White House on Tuesday threatened to veto. At its core, the tension between the most powerful Democrat in the country and one of the party’s newest, most liberal members embodies a debate over how best, in style and substance, to defeat President Donald Trump. And both sides think they’re right. For allies of the longtime California congresswoman, Pelosi’s off-handed dismissal of Ocasio-Cortez and the three other liberal freshmen House members who opposed a border security package last month was a necessary comeuppance for “the squad” of newcomers who are trying to push the party leftward. “These people have their public whatever and their Twitter world,” Pelosi told The New York Times. “But they didn’t have any following.” In the speaker’s world, they lack what Pelosi often calls “the currency of the realm” — the power to turn their high-volume activism into a coalitionHere's the full story.

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Donald Trump USA Headlines News Today

President Donald Trump declared himself a champion of the environment Monday, working to boost his standing on climate change and pollution issues in advance of the 2020 election despite having launched some of the most sweeping rollbacks in air, water and other protections in decades. “We have only one America. We have only one planet,” Trump said in a White House address that featured some of his most extensive remarks on the environment to date. Trump’s previous conservation statements have included campaigning to all but eliminate the Environmental Protection Agency and tweets that mocked climate change science. His administration has focused on propping up the lagging U.S. coal industry and expanding a boom in U.S. gas and oil. “A strong economy is vital to maintaining a healthy environment,” Trump declared, saying he was balancing business-friendly oversight with public health and conservation protections. Cabinet members stood and applauded the president’s remarks and then went to the East Room podium, one-by-one, to attest to his dedication to conservation. The president also brought to the stage a Florida bait and tackle shop owner, Bruce Hrobak, who praised what he said were the administration’s efforts against water-fouling algae before pumping his fist in the air and declaring, “Trump 2020.” Former government regulators and environmental advocates said Trump’s promotion of its environmental record strained credulity, coming from an administration that has moved to weaken several landmark U.S. protections for air and water and roll back Obama-era efforts against climate change. “Trump’s environmental record is suchHere's the full story.

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Joe Biden - US Today Headline Stories

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden said Sunday he chose South Carolina to deliver an apology for his controversial remarks about segregationist senators because he wanted to offer it to an audience most likely to have been offended by his words. Kamala Harris, a rival for the Democratic nomination who sharply criticized Joe Biden for those remarks and his views on federally mandated busing, used her campaign trip to the state Sunday to praise Biden for apologizing. South Carolina looms large over the early months of the Democratic contest because it is fourth in line behind Iowa, New Hampshire and Nevada in voting for a nominee, is the first state in the South to vote, and has the largest African American electorate in the early states. As the state is a test of black support, both Biden and Harris as well as other Democrats have been addressing African American issues during campaign visits to the state. The criticism of Biden began last month after he recalled how, as a young senator from Delaware, he worked on some issues with two Southern Democratic segregationists in the U.S. Senate even though they agreed on little, offering that period as an example of a long-ago time of civility and himself as a consensus-seeker. “Was I wrong a few weeks ago?” Joe Biden asked a mostly black audience of several hundred people in Sumter on Saturday, the first day of a weekend visit to South Carolina. “Yes, I was. I regret it, and I’m sorryHere's the full story.

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African Migrants - Refugees traveling to US

Marilyne Tatang, 23, crossed nine borders in two months to reach Mexico from the West African nation of Cameroon, fleeing political violence after police torched her house, she said. She plans to soon take a bus north for four days and then cross a tenth border, into the United States. She is not alone – a record number of fellow Africans are flying to South America and then traversing thousands of miles of highway and a treacherous tropical rainforest to reach the United States. Tatang, who is eight months pregnant, took a raft across a river into Mexico on June 8, a day after Mexico struck a deal with U.S. President Donald Trump to do more to control the biggest flows of migrants heading north to the U.S. border in more than a decade. The migrants vying for entry at the U.S. southern border are mainly Central Americans. But growing numbers from a handful of African countries are joining them, prompting calls from Trump and Mexico for other countries in Latin America to do their part to slow the overall flood of migrants. As more Africans learn from relatives and friends who have made the trip that crossing Latin America to the United States is tough but not impossible, more are making the journey, and in turn are helping others follow in their footsteps, migration experts say. Trump’s threats to clamp down on migrants have ricocheted around the globe, paradoxically spurring some to exploit what they see as a narrowingHere's the full story.

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Venezuela Military Might

“We look to the heavens, asking for peace,” Nicolás Maduro said. “All the while our military exercises play out. We plead to God with our missiles pointed.”

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Donald Trump Message to Americans on July 4th Celebration - USA News Headlines

President Donald Trump celebrated the story of America as “the greatest political journey in human history” in a Fourth of July commemoration before a soggy but cheering crowd of spectators, many of them invited, on the grounds of the Lincoln Memorial. Supporters welcomed his tribute to the U.S. military while protesters assailed him for putting himself center stage on a holiday devoted to unity. As rain fell on him, Trump called on Americans to “stay true to our cause” during a program that adhered to patriotic themes and hailed an eclectic mix of history’s heroes, from the armed forces, space, civil rights and other endeavors of American life. He largely stuck to his script, avoiding diversions into his agenda or re-election campaign. But in one exception, he vowed, “Very soon, we will plant the American flag on Mars,” actually a distant goal not likely to be achieved until late in the 2020s if even then. A late afternoon downpour drenched the capital’s Independence Day crowds and Trump’s speech unfolded in occasional rain. The warplanes and presidential aircraft he had summoned conducted their flyovers as planned, capped by the Navy Blue Angels aerobatics team. By adding his own, one-hour “Salute to America” production to capital festivities that typically draw hundreds of thousands anyway, Trump became the first president in nearly seven decades to address a crowd at the National Mall on the Fourth of July. Protesters objecting to what they saw as his co-opting of the holiday inflated a roly-poly balloonHere's the full story.

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Donald Trump Campaigning - USA Headlines

The Justice Department says it’s still looking for a way to include a citizenship question on the 2020 census, even though the government has started the process of printing the questionnaire without it. The abrupt shift from the Justice Department on Wednesday came hours after President Donald Trump insisted he was not dropping his efforts to ask about citizenship in next year’s nationwide survey. On Twitter he declared, “We are absolutely moving forward.” The administration has faced numerous roadblocks to adding the citizenship question, including last week’s Supreme Court ruling that blocked its inclusion, at least temporarily. The Justice Department had insisted to the Supreme Court that it needed the matter resolved by the end of June because it faced a deadline to begin printing census forms and other materials. But on Wednesday, officials told a Maryland judge they believed there may still be a way to meet Trump’s demands. “There may be a legally available path,” Assistant Attorney General Joseph Hunt told U.S. District Judge George Hazel during a conference call with parties to one of three census lawsuits. The call was closed to reporters, but a transcript was made available soon after. A day earlier, a Justice Department spokeswoman confirmed that there would be “no citizenship question on the 2020 census” amid signs that the administration was ending the legal fight. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said in a statement Tuesday that the “Census Bureau has started the process of printing the decennial questionnaires without the question.” Trump’s tweetHere's the full story.

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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez - USA Headline Politics News

Controversy broadsided the embattled U.S. Border Patrol agency Monday, as a high-profile U.S. Congresswoman touring detention facilities called conditions “horrifying” and as current and former agency staffers were alleged to have posted offensive comments about the lawmaker and migrants on a private Facebook page. Migrants held at a border patrol station in Texas were subjected to psychological abuse and told to drink out of toilets, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said after a visit with members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to the main border patrol facility in El Paso. The tour, which also included a visit to a Clint, Texas, facility, followed reports from a government watchdog that immigrants were being housed in overcrowded and unsanitary conditions. “After I forced myself into a cell with women and began speaking to them, one of them described their treatment at the hands of officers as “psychological warfare,” Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a first-term New York Democrat, wrote on Twitter after leaving the El Paso border patrol station. “This has been horrifying so far.” U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), which oversees Border Patrol, did not immediately respond to a request for comment on her statements about the visit. The Border Patrol also came under fire on Monday following a report by the non-profit news site ProPublica that offensive content had been posted on a private Facebook group for current and former CBP officers. Posts included jokes about the deaths of migrants and sexually explicit comments referencing Ocasio-Cortez, the news outlet said. Reuters did not independentlyHere's the full story.

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US RQ-4 Global Hawk Drone vs Iran's Khordad 3 SAM system

The United States is “in many ways” already at war with Iran through its acts of economic terror targeting the country, says an American author and political analyst. Daniel Kovalik, also a human rights expert and a peace activist, who was speaking to Press TV last Sunday, said the US’s war on Iran was “just in a different form” than actual military action. “The US is imposing draconian sanctions on Iran…is really engaged in economic terrorism by trying to prevent Iran from selling any of its oil, which is really the lifeblood of the Iranian economy,” he added. The US began significantly escalating tensions with Iran last year by leaving a multilateral nuclear deal with the Islamic Republic and other countries and returning the sanctions that had been lifted by the deal. The sanctions, include an intended zero-tolerance ban targeting Iran’s oil exports. In broaching “economic terrorism,” Kovalik was repeating a term used by Iranian authorities, including Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, who have underlined that the sanctions are not the US’s alternative for war, but amount to actual warfare themselves. Washington has also engaged in alarming military buildup in the region. It has, however, occasionally distanced itself from an intention to attack the Islamic Republic, and claimed it would talk to the country without any preconditions. Kovalik, however, said, “It’s clear that the US doesn’t really want negotiation with Iran. What it more wants to do is bullying Iran and weaken Iran. It would want regime change ideally.” IranianHere's the full story.

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Democrats, Who is who in 2020 U.S. Democratic presidential candidates

The largest presidential field in modern Democratic politics could quickly shrink as more than half of the contenders are in real danger of failing to meet tougher requirements to participate in the fall round of debates. Short on support and money and bound by tough party rules, once soaring politicians may soon be seen as also-rans. They include Julian Castro, who is seeking to capitalize on his strong debate performance last week; Kirsten Gillibrand, one of her party’s most outspoken feminists; and Cory Booker, who rose to stardom as the energetic mayor of Newark, New Jersey. A difficult period lies ahead as the party begins to sort through its expansive roster of candidates. The process will help Democrats zero in on someone to challenge President Donald Trump. But it is also forcing candidates to burn through cash to stay competitive and could result in a field that’s older, whiter and more male — an uncomfortable development for a party that says it prizes diversity. “There are some campaigns that are in something of a Hail Mary mode,” said technology entrepreneur Andrew Yang, one of the lesser-known White House hopefuls who expressed confidence in his own chances. Of the 20 candidates who qualified for the first round of debates in June and July, just six are sure to appear in the September-October round, when the Democratic National Committee requires participants to hit 2% in multiple polls and 130,000 individual donors. Though many campaigns are worried, DNC Chairman Tom Perez has resistedHere's the full story.

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Kim Jong-un - North Korea Politics Today

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Saturday he would like to see North Korean leader Kim Jong Un this weekend at the demilitarized zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea, and North Korea said a meeting would be “meaningful” if it happened. Trump, who is in Osaka, Japan, for a Group of 20 summit, is due to arrive in South Korea later on Saturday. He is scheduled to return to Washington on Sunday. If Trump and Kim were to meet, it would be for the third time in just over a year, and four months since their second summit, in Vietnam, broke down with no progress on U.S. efforts to press North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons. Trump made the offer to meet Kim in a comment on Twitter about his trip to South Korea. “While there, if Chairman Kim of North Korea sees this, I would meet him at the Border/DMZ just to shake his hand and say Hello(?)!” he said. Trump later told reporters his offer to Kim was a spur-of-the-moment idea: “I just thought of it this morning.” “We’ll be there and I just put out a feeler because I don’t know where he is right now. He may not be in North Korea,” he said. “If he’s there, we’ll see each other for two minutes, that’s all we can, but that will be fine,” he added. Trump said he and Kim “get along very well”. A senior North Korean official said a summit betweenHere's the full story.

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