AP Top Stories July 10 A

Here’s the latest for Wednesday July 10: Calls for Labor Secretary Alex Acosta to resign; Obama health care law challenged in federal court; Floods in Nebraska; Heatwave in Alaska.

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Why 2020 Democrats Can’t Take the LGBTQ+ Vote for Granted

Beto ran a 5K for the cause, Joe Biden took a turn behind the bar at the Stonewall Inn, Mayor Pete and Elizabeth Warren are selling Pride-themed items in their merch stores. It’s Pride Month, and the 2020 Democratic contenders have been courting LGBTQ voters in a big way. But although most LGBT voters identified as Democrats in 2018, being trans, gay or pansexual does not a Democrat make.

VICE News put together a panel made up of 12 members of the LGBTQ+ community and asked them about their politics — which were extremely diverse — and who they like for 2020.

“I think Donald Trump is really changing the Republican Party by working with the gay and lesbian community,” said Paul Ramirez, a Republican gay man and the vp of advertising at The Wisdom Companies. “If there was a homophobic drop of blood in him, we would have heard that 20 years ago.”

Others decidedly disagreed about Trump’s record on LBGTQ issues, and its effect on the community.

“When the Trump administration, or perhaps just Trump via Twitter, puts out a statement saying that ‘no more trans people are allowed in the military, that’s it we’re cutting you off and anybody in has got to leave.’ That affects the lives of transgender citizens of this country,” said actor Donnie Cianciotto, who identifies as a pansexual transgender man and a Democrat. “It makes us appear ‘less than’ to other people, who now can justify their bigotry and their transphobia, because look at what the government does.”

As for Mayor Pete, the openly gay candidate running for President, his out and proud status wasn’t enough for panelists, on either end of the political spectrum.

“There’s nothing fresh. He’s an Obama sequel,” said Brandon Straka, a Republican gay man and founder of the # WalkAway Campaign, which aims to get left-leaning voters to turn away from the Democratic Party. “The fact that he’s gay — that doesn’t mean he has my back as a trans person,” said LGBTQIA+ educator and activist Jamey Jesperson, who identifies as a progressive queer non-binary asexual transfemme. “It means nothing to me that he is a gay person, because he’s also cis, and he’s also white.”

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EPA replaces Obama rule on coal-fired power plants

The Trump administration on Wednesday completed one of its biggest rollbacks of environmental rules, replacing a landmark Obama-era effort that sought to wean the nation’s electrical grid off coal-fired power plants and their climate-damaging pollution. (June 19)

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Obama family lands at Avignon airport for holiday | AFP

The family plane of former US President Barack Obama lands on the tarmac of Avignon airport, as he and his family arrive in France for a holiday in Provence. IMAGES

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Anthony Scaramucci’s Return To Credibility (HBO)

This week, the Sin City calendar included the 10th Annual Skybridge Alternatives Conference, known as SALT.

It’s your standard rich-meet-powerful confab, the kind of thing you’d find in Davos or Aspen. With one notable exception: this one is run by Anthony Scaramucci.

Skybridge is The Mooch’s investment company. At its height, say in 2017, SALT was pretty mega: former heads of state and a-list entertainers appeared on stage. But then Scaramucci’s fortunes changed in July 2017 when he took a job as President Trump’s White House Communications Director. That resulted in one of the all-time great Washington faceplants. Eleven days into the job, Scaramucci was fired, and his brand was beclowned.

The Mooch was alone. There was no SALT conference in 2018.

But a year is a long time, and the finance world has once again opened its arms to Scaramucci. SALT 2019 lacked some of the star power of previous years, but the Mooch did get some heavy-hitters: former White House chief of staff John Kelly was the keynote guest. Other panels included Chris Christie and Jeff Sessions.

Some Democrats showed up, too — former Obama advisers Valerie Jarrett and Susan Rice were here. Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard stopped by, too.

At the center of it all was a man who many people in politics left for dead. But at SALT at least, The Mooch is very much alive.

“My issues with the president are not what he’s doing. He’s got some very very good policies actually working for average people,” Scaramucci told VICE News. “My issue with the president is how he’s doing it. It’s not what he’s doing.”​​

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AP Top Stories April 25 P

Here’s the latest for Thursday, April 25th: Joe Biden says he asked Obama not to endorse him; Vladimir Putin meets with Kim Jong Un; French police look for cause of Notre Dame fire; “Avengers: Endgame” poised to make big box office money.

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Not a Russian agent? Assange charged with ‘Manning collusion’

After his dramatic arrest, WikiLeaks front man Julian Assange is facing a charge of conspiracy to hack a US government computer.

As remarkable as it may be, the US is now saying that exposing US human rights abuses, wanton murder – committed by the US military, is more serious, than the abuses and murder themselves.

Chelsea, formerly Bradley Manning, was freed by Obama. Judging by the toxicity – on TV, in Washington, Assange shouldn’t be too hopefully.

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What Obama’s Homeland Security Secretary Thinks About Trump’s Immigration Policy (HBO)

President Barack Obama’s former homeland security secretary Jeh Johnson would prefer not to be the frequent recipient of President Trump’s praise. But despite his party allegiance and previous employer, the president, his son, and the White House’s official Twitter feed have all recently praised Johnson for telling multiple interviewers that America’s southern border is “truly in a crisis.”
When VICE News’s Michael Moynihan sat down with Johnson to discuss Trump, the politics of immigration, and his tenure overseeing border enforcement, he was quick to point out that the president and his surrogates truncated his quote, leaving out his criticism of administration policies.
“I said that 4000 arrests on our southern border — one hundred thousand in a month — is truly a crisis,” Johnson told VICE News. “I then went on to, in the same interview, prescribe all the things I think should be done to deal with the crisis and what we seem to be doing wrong. The one sentence ‘it is truly a crisis’ went viral.”
Johnson, who began his career in politics interning for Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, a centrist Democrat, acknowledges that his party is lurching to the left — and that the Obama administration’s aggressive immigration policies would get a tougher reception these days.

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What about George Washington? Moscow ‘meddled’ in Obama, Bush elections, Pompeo claims

The conclusion of the report by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, that there was no conspiracy between Donald Trump & the Kremlin, was supposed to put the whole issue to bed. But while answering a question from US Democrats, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo surprisingly expanded his list of elections Russia ‘interfered’ in, all the way back to the George W. Bush era.

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