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Breaking: Mike Huckabee Announces He Is Running For President. Again.

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Ordained Baptist minister and former Republican governor Mike Huckabee will bring his unique blend of Southern charm and anti-gay hate to the 2016 presidential race.

He’s been a staffer for a televangelist, a pastor, the Lt. Governor and then Governor of Arkansas, a Fox News TV show host, an author, and now, once again, Mike Huckabee wants to be President. This morning, as expected, the 59-year old Hope, Arkansas native returned to his hometown to formally announce what he’s made increasingly clear. 

After walking through his bio, growing up in Hope Arkansas, Huckabee told his audience, “I am a candidate for president of the United States of America.”

Huckabee “leaked” a less-than-impressive campaign teaser last week, positioning himself as the man who battled and won against the Clinton machine in Arkansas, despite the fact that he succeeded, and not by running against, Bill Clinton. 

In 2008, Huckabee also tried to win the GOP nomination, but lost to John McCain. In 2012, amid wide speculation he would try again, he teamed up with Donald Trump to announce he would not, stating he just did not have the burning desire in him to run.

Most voters might think that would have disqualified him from seeking higher office ever again, but no, he’s in it to win it, supposedly. And if not, Huckabee will have done what most GOP presidential candidates set out to do: make more money.

Huckabee is widely known primarily for invoking his Christian orthodox faith and using it as a sword, sometimes against his critics, but mostly against gay people. Over the past decade the Southern Baptist has taken every possible opportunity to criticize, attack, lambast, and denigrate same-sex marriage, the LGBT community, and its allies. He’s pandering to his base, of course, but in a country where over six in ten Americans now believe same-sex couples should have the legal right to marry, 35 percent of likely voters say they are less likely to vote for a candidate who doesn’t support same-sex marriage.

The Arkansas Republican has told states repeatedly thy should ignore the Supreme Court if it rules for same-sex marriage. In a more embarrassing episode, he claimed that marriage equality is discriminatory because it denies bisexual people two spouses. He took the opportunity of speaking at a Holocaust tour to claim same-sex marriage will destroy civilization. And he’s flat-out lied about the facts surrounding same-sex marriage, including in a Facebook rant about an Idaho wedding chapel being “forced” to marry same-sex couples.

Huckabee’s policies, like his bible, will never change.

He is vehemently anti-choice, anti-immigration reform, anti-marijuana legalization, anti-gun control, anti-Cuba, and anti-gay. He’ll work to repeal Obamacare and destroy the social safety net, including social security and Medicare for future generations, while increasing defense spending. And he won’t hesitate for one minute, despite his Ten Commandments, to take us to war. And he’s obsessively pro-Israel, for all the wrong, i.e., religious reasons.

Importantly, Americans likely realize that while Huckabee has no real shot at the White House, he will turn the 2016 campaign ugly, and force what will ultimately be his almost two dozen GOP opponents to the far right, the last thing America needs.

Huckabee’s announcement puts him in the race early, to gain access to the millions of dollars in campaign cash that await him. He joins Ted Cruz, Rand Paul Marco Rubio, Carly Fiorina, and Ben Carson, but there will be many, many other joining soon.

Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight Politics dove into all the numbers, and concluded that for Huckabee, it may be the same way his 2008 campaign did.

 

This is a breaking news and developing story and will be updated.

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BREAKING NEWS

Federal Appeals Court Rules House Can Have Trump’s Tax Returns – Committee Expects Them ‘Immediately’

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A federal appeals court in Washington, D.C. ruled Tuesday that the powerful House Ways and Means Committee can be given Donald Trump‘s tax returns.

The decision is “a blow” to the former president,” as CNN reports. It comes after a Trump-appointed lower court judge had ruled against Trump, allowing the House to gain access to the documents Trump has protected for years.

The former president appealed.

READ MORE: Tax Researcher Reveals Ivana Trump Being Buried at Bedminister Gets Her Ex-Husband a Ton of Tax Breaks

The federal appeals court Tuesday morning upheld the lower court’s ruling, granting the House access. Trump can still appeal.

The House Ways and Means Committee was quick to respond, tweeting: “We expect to receive the requested tax returns and audit files immediately.”

This is a breaking news and developing story.

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

‘God Anointed Him’: Christian Right Expert Explains Conservative Outrage After FBI Raided Trump’s Mar-a-Lago

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Veteran journalist Sarah Posner, who has spent years writing about religion and the Christian right, has an explanation for the outraged response from some Trump supporters over the FBI executing a legal search warrant on Mar-a-Lago.

Hours after the news broke, Florida Republican state representative Anthony Sabatini called for “an emergency legislative session” to “Sever all ties with DOJ immediately” over the FBI executing a legal search warrant of Trump’s home. “Any FBI agent conducting law enforcement functions outside the purview of our State should be arrested upon sight,” he wrote, apparently unaware of the U.S. Constitution.

Tuesday night Trump supporters formed a small convoy driving outside Mar-a-Lago, some with Trump banners, Trump flags, or the American flag, – even one vehicle painted with the American flag – to show their support for the former president who might be facing legal consequences, as video from NBC 6 reporter Cristian Benavides shows.

READ MORE: ‘This Is a National Security Issue’: Former FBI Agents Note Key Details About ‘Raid’ on Trump’s Mar-a-Lago

“The GOP position is that Trump is above the law,” writes The Washington Post’s Greg Sargent. “That’s what the GOP position on Trump was throughout his presidency, and that’s what it is now. Say it that way. Don’t let Republicans get away with using fake outrage to obscure this fundamental reality.”

Posner has written two books on the Christian Right including “UNHOLY: How White Christian Nationalists Powered the Trump Presidency, And the Devastating Legacy They Left Behind.”

In response to Sargent’s remarks she advises: “Remember too that much of Trump’s base believes that God anointed him, that it’s God’s will that he be back in the White House. And that they need to engage in ‘spiritual warfare’ with ‘demonic’ enemies of Trump — keep this in mind as right-wing influencers call for civil war.”

READ MORE: IRS Under Trump Allowed a Decades-Old Influential Anti-LGBTQ Hate Group to Change Its Tax Status and Become a Church

U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene Monday night tweeted, “The FBI is raiding President Trump’s home in Maralago! This is the rogue behavior of communist countries, NOT the United States of America!!! These are the type of things that happen in countries during civil war. The political persecution MUST STOP!!!”

Tuesday morning CNN’s Donie O’Sullivan posted a graph and noted the “big spike in tweets referencing ‘civil war’ right after the news of the FBI search of Mar-a-Lago broke last night.”

Dr. Caroline Orr Bueno posted an image of a large number of tweets that mention civil war and other related calls, including: “I already bought my ammo,” “Civil war! Pick up arms, people!” “Civil War 2.0 just kicked off,” “Let’s do the war,” and “One step closer to a kinetic civil war.”

 

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News

‘This Is a National Security Issue’: Former FBI Agents Note Key Details About ‘Raid’ on Trump’s Mar-a-Lago

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Two former FBI agents are weighing in on the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s execution of a search warrant Monday at the Florida residence of Donald Trump, the former President, which he called a “raid.”

“This is a nat sec/CI issue,” tweeted Asha Rangappa Tuesday morning, meaning national security and counterintelligence. Rangappa is an attorney, former FBI special agent, senior lecturer at Yale, and CNN commentator.

She was pointing to a tweet by another former FBI special agent, James Harris.

READ MORE: ‘Coverup of Treason’: Trump-Appointed IG, Under Investigation, Knew of Missing Secret Service and DHS Texts Far Earlier

Harris has an extensive bio, highlights of which include his role at FBI HQ Cyber Division as a Program Manager and then Unit Chief (Acting), FBI Senior Liaison Officer to DHS Cybersecurity and Communications, and FBI Assistant Section Chief of the Counterterrorism Internet Operations Section. Earlier in his FBI career he says he “built up the largest Federal Cybercrime Task Force in the US.”

Harris points to this section of a CNN article published Tuesday morning, written by seven CNN reporters:

“In early June, a handful of investigators made a rare visit to the property seeking more information about potentially classified material from Trump’s time in the White House that had been taken to Florida. The four investigators, including Jay Bratt, the chief of the counterintelligence and export control section at the Justice Department, sat down with two of Trump’s attorneys, Bobb and Evan Corcoran, according to a source present for the meeting.”

READ MORE: Trump’s Legal Team Now in ‘Direct Communication’ With DOJ Officials About J6 Criminal Investigation: Report

Harris on Twitter highlights this sentence: “The four investigators, including Jay Bratt, the chief of the counterintelligence and export control section at the Justice Department…”

He tweets: “All you ‘outraged’ GOPers better cool your jets. You might be walking your rhetoric back really fast when you figure out what this seems to be. The devil is in the details.”

In January the National Archives was forced to transport from Mar-a-Lago 15 cartons of documents and other items that, according to the Presidential Records Act and the National Archives, should have been turned over to the Archives.

The FBI’s execution of the search warrant and reports that they left with a large quantity of documents suggests Trump might not have turned over everything taken from the White House.

Rangappa earlier Tuesday tweeted: “Ask yourself: What kind of info makes its way to the WH, and specifically to the president? —> HIGH LEVEL SECRETS. PDB stuff. Defense info. These aren’t low-level diplomatic cables or overclassified State Dept. correspondence. Just saying.”

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