News from the note…
A round up of the day’s news that might be of interest to you.
This is an OPEN THREAD, folks. Chat about any of the stories listed, share links to stories that caught your eye today, and generally have a good time discussing whatever you want.
President Donald Trump on Thursday seized on a new migrant caravan approaching the US to frame the midterm elections as a fight over border security while blaming Democrats, without evidence, of supporting the influx.
“It’s going to be an election of the caravan,” Trump said at a campaign rally in Missoula, Montana. “You know what I’m talking about.”
In an extended riff about illegal immigration and the caravan, Trump told the crowd that Democrats were banking on the caravan to arrive before Election Day so they could vote for Democrats — even though as asylum-seekers, they wouldn’t be citizens and therefore would not be able to vote in the congressional elections.
“As you know, I’m willing to send the military to defend our southern border if necessary, all ’cause — because of the illegal immigration onslaught brought by the Democrats because they refuse to acknowledge or to change the laws,” he said. “They like it. They also figure everybody coming in is going to vote Democrat, you know. Hey, they’re not so stupid when you think about it, right?”CNN
Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort appeared in court Friday afternoon in a wheelchair due to what his lawyer said were “significant” health issues related to the “terms of his confinement.”
Manafort’s lawyer, Kevin Downing, said his health has suffered since he’s been in jail. Judge T.S. Ellis III agreed to Downing’s request to expedite the preparation of Manafort’s presentence report in order to allow Manafort to be moved out of confinement and into a Bureau of Prisons facility, if he is sentenced to prison in February.
A person familiar with Manafort’s condition told CNN that Manafort is suffering from inflammation related to his diet in the Alexandria detention center where he has been housed.The Hill
The Justice Department on Friday charged a Russian woman for her alleged role in a conspiracy to interfere with the 2018 U.S. election, marking the first criminal case prosecutors have brought against a foreign national for interfering in the upcoming midterms.
Elena Khusyaynova, 44, was charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States. Prosecutors said she managed the finances of “Project Lakhta,” a foreign influence operation they said was designed “to sow discord in the U.S. political system” by pushing arguments and misinformation online about a host of divisive political issues, including immigration, the Confederate flag, gun control and the National Football League national-anthem protests.
The charges against Khusyaynova came just as the Office of the Director of National Intelligence warned that it was concerned about “ongoing campaigns” by Russia, China and Iran to interfere with the upcoming midterm elections and the 2020 race — an ominous warning just weeks before voters head to the polls.Washington Post
Hundreds of thousands of supporters of the European Union marched through London on Saturday in the biggest demonstration so far to demand that the British government holds a public vote on the terms of Brexit.
The protesters waved the blue and gold flag of the EU and held up “Bollocks to Brexit” banners under sunny skies to call for another referendum on the eventual deal on how Britain will leave the world’s biggest trading bloc.
The march comes after another tumultuous week for Prime Minister Theresa May in which she failed to agree a divorce deal with EU leaders in Brussels and infuriated members of her own party by making further concessions in the talks.
With just over five months until Britain is due to leave there is no clarity about what a future trade deal with the EU will look like and some rebels in May’s Conservative Party have threatened to vote down a deal if she clinches one.
James McGrory, one of the organisers of the march, said voters should have the chance to change their minds because the decision will impact their lives for generations.
“People think the Brexit negotiations are a total mess, they have no faith in the government to deliver the promises that were made, partly because they cannot be delivered,” he said.Reuters
“Saudi Arabia is a country with 20 million people population. Two-thirds of them are young, less than 30 years old,” Jamal told us. “Mohammed bin Salman is putting all issues — economic, religion — in Saudi Arabia on fast-forward.”
Jamal and I wrote to elevate the desires of everyday Saudis and Iranians and to perhaps encourage the leadership to change course.
“Even some people who do not disagree with me writing, they will say to me, ‘But it is not the right time to say it,’ ” Jamal said during our conversation. “We are far away from democracy. Democracy in America and Finland and Denmark, it humbles the leaders. It make the leader accountable to the smallest person in the street. Our leaders? No. Our leaders see themselves as leaders who know best, and people like me and Jason are just hindering the process for their reform.”Washington Post
From The “Who Would Do Such A Crappy Thing?” File
Someone has snatched a giant, inflatable colon used to teach about the dangers of colon cancer.
The University of Kansas Cancer Center said Friday in a news release that it was stolen from a pickup bed in Brookside.
Surgical oncologist John Ashcraft says colon cancer is a tough subject for many to talk about and the giant inflatable colon is a great conversation starter.
It is 10 feet-long, weighs 150 pound and is valued at $4,000.AP Oddities