Trump discourages black college students from becoming astronauts in bizarre anti-science rant

President Donald Trump went off-script and attacked astronauts as a career choice at an event for Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs).

The president made the anti-science rant while congratulating his administrations work with HBCUs.

“To give just a few examples, NASA is expanding outreach to HBCUs who want to become scientists, engineers and even astronauts,” Trump said.

“I don’t know about the astronaut,” he added, breaking from prepared remarks. “I don’t want to be an astronaut.”

Trump then polled the audience: “Does anybody want to be an astronaut? I see one. There’s one brave person.”

[Raw Story]

Media

Trump dismisses idea of allowing Bahamians into U.S. after Hurricane Dorian

President Donald Trump on Monday downplayed the idea of allowing Bahamians fleeing the destruction of Hurricane Dorian into the United States on humanitarian grounds, hours after his acting Customs and Border Protection chief said it was worth considering.

“We have to be very careful. Everybody needs totally proper documentation because the Bahamas had some tremendous problems with people going to the Bahamas that weren’t supposed to be there,” Trump said on the White House South Lawn before departing for a campaign rally in North Carolina, where he also planned to survey Dorian damage.

“I don’t want to allow people that weren’t supposed to be in the Bahamas to come into the United States, including some very bad people and some very bad gang members and some very, very bad drug dealers.”

Earlier Monday, acting Customs and Border Protection chief Mark Morgan said during a press briefing that while there has not been any formal grant of temporary protected status, or TPS, for Bahamians affected by Dorian, it was not something he had ruled out. TPS provides legal status to migrants from countries affected by war or natural disaster and allows them to live and work in the U.S. for a set period of time.

Morgan said he had yet to discuss it with Trump but said, “I think it would be appropriate to have that circumstance. History shows we’ve done that before.” He added that if it’s a “lengthy time” before residents of the Bahamas can get back on their feet, he expected the discussion to happen.

Instead of allowing Bahamians into this country — which Trump said is “also recovering from the hurricane” — Trump suggested those struggling in devastated areas of the Bahamas could go to the “large sections” of their country that were not hit.

The conflicting stances came a day after more than 100 Bahamians were forced off a ferry boat before it could reach Florida, according to two U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials.

Those removed from the boat were supposed to be taken to the Bahamas capital of Nassau first to get visas, a process that authorities in the United States have been coordinating with the Bahamas government on to ensure is done correctly, Customs and Border Protection officials said in a statement on Monday.

The ferry boat operator had not coordinated the evacuation with U.S. authorities first, the officials said.

Customs and Border Protection said in a statement on Monday that it is “supporting the humanitarian mission with interagency partners in the Bahamas” following Dorian, one of the strongest Atlantic storms ever recorded.

“CBP continues to process the arrivals of passengers evacuating from the Bahamas according to established policy and procedures — as demonstrated by the nearly 1,500 Hurricane Dorian survivors who arrived at the Port of Palm Beach, Fla., aboard a cruise ship on Saturday and were processed without incident,” the agency said.

The agency added it was “notified of a vessel preparing to embark an unknown number of passengers in Freeport and requested that the operator of the vessel coordinate with U.S. and Bahamian government officials in Nassau before departing The Bahamas.” The agency said that it has already processed nearly 1,500 storm survivors at the Port of Palm Beach, Fla., aboard a cruise ship on Saturday.

Video of the evacuees being ordered off the boat was first shared by Miami’s WSVN reporter Brian Entin late Sunday.

Anyone arriving in the U.S. from another country needs to first meet with a Customs and Border Protection officer at official ports of entry and must have valid identity and travel documents, the agency’s statement said.

Dorian has killed at least 44 people in the Bahamas, according to the country’s health minister. The storm hit the islands as a Category 5 last Sunday and Monday, leaving tens of thousands of residents homeless. It then slammed North Carolina’s Outer Banks Islands before pounding Canada’s Atlantic Coast.

[NBC News]

White Supremacists Responsible for All Race-Based Domestic Terrorism Incidents in 2018 – DOJ Blocked Report

The Trump administration has known since at least April that alleged white supremacists were responsible for every single act of race-based domestic terrorism in the U.S. in 2018, yet not only took no action to combat the growing right wing violent extremism, but actually substantially reduced or even eliminated funding and programsthat combat white supremacist extremism, violence, and terrorism – and then blocked the data from reaching the hands of Congress.

“Domestic Terrorism in 2018,” a document (embedded below) prepared by the State of New Jersey’s Office of Homeland Security Preparedness, “shows 25 of the 46 individuals allegedly involved in 32 different domestic terrorism incidents were identified as white supremacists,” Yahoo News’ Jana Winter and Hunter Walker report.

That document finds there were “32 domestic terrorist attacks, disrupted plots, threats of violence, and weapons stockpiling by individuals with a radical political or social agenda who lack direction or influence from foreign terrorist organizations in 2018.”

The report was “circulated” throughout the U.S. Dept. of Justice “and around the country in April just as members of the Senate pushed the DOJ to provide them with precise information about the number of white supremacists involved in domestic terrorism.”

The Justice Department, under President Trump’s hand-picked Attorney General Bill Barr, refused to hand over the data or the document to Congress.

Meanwhile, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) in January of 2019 had already compiled a report, announcing that, “Right-Wing Extremism Linked to Every 2018 Extremist Murder in the U.S., ADL Finds.”

ADL reported that “Right-wing extremists were linked to at least 50 extremist-related murders in the United States in 2018, making them responsible for more deaths than in any year since 1995, according to new data from the ADL.”

1995 was the year domestic terrorist Timothy McVeigh blew up the Oklahoma City federal building, slaughtering 168 people and injuring more than 680 others.

“The tally represents a 35 percent increase from the 37 extremist-related murders in 2017,” ADL reported, “making 2018 the fourth-deadliest year on record for domestic extremist-related killings since 1970. Last year saw the highest percentage of right-wing extremist-related killings since 2012, the last year when all documented killings were by right-wing extremists.”

Why the Dept. of Justice and the White House blocked the data from reaching Congress is now yet another investigation Congress should take up.

Here’s the document the DOJ refused to hand over to Members of the House and Senate:

[New Civil Rights Movement]

Trump: ‘I’d Love to See Kaepernick Back in the NFL But Only if He is Good Enough’

President Donald Trump said he’d “love to see” former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick back in the league, “but only if he is good enough.”

Trump made Kaepernick a target of his ire during his 2016 election campaign, frequently trashing the ex-San Francisco 49er for kneeling during the National Anthem. Kaepernick was protesting racial injustice in America

“I think if he was good enough, I know the owners, I know Bob Kraft, I know so many of the owners. If he’s good enough they’d sign him. So if he’s good enough, I know these people. They would sign him in a heartbeat. They will do anything they can to win games,” Trump told reporters before leaving for a vacation Friday.

“Frankly, I’d love to see Kaepernick come in if he’s good enough. But I don’t want to see him come in because somebody thinks of it’s a good PR move. If he’s good enough, he will be in,” Trump said.

Earlier this year, Kaepernick settled a collusion lawsuit with the NFL, which is subject to a confidentiality agreement.

Kaepernick alleged that NFL owners conspired to keep him off the field after the end of his 2016 contract due to his activism.

Earlier this week, Kaepernick posted a work-out video indicating he was still interested in getting back to playing with an NFL team.

[Mediaite]

Trump responds to reports of Cummings’s Baltimore home being robbed: ‘Too bad!’

President Trump responded early Friday to reports that Rep. Elijah Cummings’s (D-Md.) Baltimore home was broken into, tweeting that the reported incident was “really bad news” and “too bad!”

“Really bad news! The Baltimore house of Elijah Cummings was robbed. Too bad!” Trump tweeted.

Trump’s early morning remark came just days after he sent more than a dozen tweets criticizing the House Oversight and Reform Committee chairman, accusing Cummings of being a “brutal bully” and saying his district, which includes parts of West Baltimore, was “rat and rodent infested” and a “very dangerous & filthy place” where “no human being would want to live.”

His attack on the longtime Democratic lawmaker was seen as the latest in a line of statements aimed at minority members of Congress, which some Democrats have denounced as racist.

Trump has insisted on multiple occasions that he is the “least racist person anywhere in the world.” 

Cummings has spoken out against Trump repeatedly on various issues surrounding his administration and chairs a committee that has pursued aggressive investigations into the Trump administration.

The burglary, which police said occurred early Saturday morning, reportedly happened just hours before the president’s initial tweet about Cummings.

“At this time, it is unknown if any property was taken from the location,” a spokesman for Baltimore police told news outlets on Thursday.

[The Hill]

Trump Claims He’s ‘Least Racist Person’ While Calling Don Lemon ‘Dumbest Man’ On TV

President Donald Trump lambasted CNN’s Don Lemon as “dumb” and “stupid” after the Democratic debate moderator asked questions about the president’s “bigotry” on Tuesday.

Trump called Lemon, who is black, “the dumbest man on television” on Twitter Wednesday, an insult he has used against the CNN anchor in the past.

The president also insisted he is “the least racist person in the world,” appearing to quote himself. In the last month, he has unleashed racist attacks on four Democratic congresswomen of color, as well as Rep. Elijah Cummings and the predominantly black city of Baltimore.

Lemon asked a series of questions regarding the current administration and race during Tuesday night’s Democratic presidential debate on CNN.

He asked former Rep. Beto O’Rourke, and later former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, about Trump’s race baiting: “President Trump is pursuing a reelection strategy based in part, on racial division. How do you convince primary voters that you’d be the best nominee to take on President Trump and heal the racial divide in America?”

O’Rourke responded that we should “call his racism out for what it is, and also talk about its consequences.”

“It doesn’t just offend our sensibilities to hear him say ‘send her back,’ about a member of Congress, because she’s a woman color, because she’s a Muslim-American, doesn’t just offend our sensibilities when he calls Mexican immigrants ‘rapists and criminals,’ or seeks to ban all Muslims from the shores of a country that’s comprised of people from the world over, from every tradition of faith,” said the Texan.

Lemon also asked Sen. Amy Klobuchar what she’d “say to those Trump voters who prioritize the economy over the president’s bigotry?”

Klobuchar responded that “there are people that voted for Donald Trump before that aren’t racist; they just wanted a better shake in the economy. And so I would appeal to them,” before adding: “I don’t think anyone can justify what this president is doing.”

Trump’s attack on Lemon echoed comments from right-wing commentators, including Fox News’ Howard Kurtz and Laura Ingraham, who questioned why Lemon would say Trump “traffics in racial division.”

O’Rourke tweeted Wednesday that “Donald Trump is a racist,” alongside a video of his response to Lemon’s question.

[Huffington Post]

Trump grows furious when reporter points out his dismal approval numbers from black Americans

President Donald Trump on Tuesday grew visibly angry after a reporter informed him that a recent poll showed that the vast majority of black Americans believe he is a racist.

While talking with reporters on the White House lawn, one reporter asked the president why 80 percent of black voters in a Quinnipiac poll said that he was racist. The same poll also showed that 89 percent of black voters said they would “definitely” not vote for Trump in 2020.

The president responded by blaming the reporter.

“You know why? Because the fake news doesn’t report it properly,” Trump said. “People like you! Fake news does not report it properly! If the news reported it properly, the right way, like instead of a statement like you just made, if the news reported it properly for all of the things I’ve done for African-Americans… I think I’d do very well with the African Americans!”

[Raw Story]

Media

Trump keeps up fight with black community by launching feud with Al Sharpton

President Donald Trump launched a feud with the Rev. Al Sharpton on Monday, escalating a series of attacks on prominent black leaders and minority progressives.Trump has recently called out minority lawmakers and leaders in an effort to define the Democratic Party and strengthen his base ahead of the 2020 presidential election. His morning tirade against Sharpton, a longtime African-American activist, come after a weekend in which the President repeatedly assailed Maryland Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings, who is black, and the city of Baltimore, parts of which lie in Cummings’ district. Later Monday, Sharpton is set to hold a press conference in Baltimore with former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, a Republican, “to address Trump’s remarks & bi-partisan outrage in the black community.”In his tweets on Monday, Trump called Sharpton a “con man, a troublemaker” who “Hates Whites & Cops!” He also claimed that during the 2016 election, Sharpton visited him at Trump Tower “to apologize for the way he was talking about me.”

In response, Sharpton tweeted a photo of Trump speaking to him, the Rev. Jesse Jackson and the late James Brown, writing, “Trump at (National Action Network) Convention 2006 telling James Brown and Jesse Jackson why he respects my work. Different tune now.” Sharpton did not address Trump’s specific claims in Monday’s tweets.

Trump ignited a racial controversy earlier this month when he repeatedly used racist language to attack four minority Democratic lawmakers. Trump has denied accusations of racism, but he hasn’t apologized for his language. On Saturday, Trump lashed out at Cummings, the House Oversight chairman who recently lambasted conditions at the border, suggesting that conditions in Cummings’ district, which is majority black and includes parts of Baltimore, are “FAR WORSE and more dangerous” than those at the US-Mexico border and called it a “very dangerous & filthy place.”

In response, Cummings tweeted that “Each morning, I wake up, and I go and fight for my neighbors. It is my constitutional duty to conduct oversight of the Executive Branch. But, it is my moral duty to fight for my constituents.”

[CNN]

Donald Trump Accused of racism, Then blasts black congressman as racist

Facing growing accusations of racism for his incendiary tweets, President Donald Trump lashed out at his critics Monday and sought to deflect the criticism by labeling a leading black congressman as himself racist.

In the latest rhetorical shot at lawmakers of color, Trump said his weekend comments referring to Rep. Elijah Cummings’ majority-black Baltimore district as a “disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess” where “no human being would want to live” were not racist. Instead, Trump argued, “if racist Elijah Cummings would focus more of his energy on helping the good people of his district, and Baltimore itself, perhaps progress could be made in fixing the mess.”

“His radical ‘oversight’ is a joke!” Trump tweeted Sunday.

After a weekend of attacks on Cummings, the son of former sharecroppers who rose to become the powerful chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, Trump expanded his attacks Monday to include a prominent Cummings defender, the Rev. Al Sharpton, who was traveling to Baltimore to hold a press conference in condemnation of the president.

“Al is a con man, a troublemaker, always looking for a score,” Trump tweeted ahead of the press conference, adding that the civil rights activist and MSNBC host “Hates Whites & Cops!”

Trump appeared to dig a deeper hole even as a top White House aide sought to dismiss the controversy by describing Trump’s comments as hyperbole. Two weeks ago, Trump caused a nationwide uproar with racist tweets directed at four Democratic congresswomen of color as he looked to stoke racial divisions for political gain heading into the 2020 election.

Trump noted that Democratic presidential contender and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders had “recently equated” parts of Baltimore to a “third world country” in 2015 comments.

“I assume that Bernie must now be labeled a Racist, just as a Republican would if he used that term and standard,” Trump tweeted Monday.

Sanders tweeted back that “Trump’s lies and racism never end. While I have been fighting to lift the people of Baltimore and elsewhere out of poverty with good paying jobs, housing and health care, he has been attacking workers and the poor.”

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican, on Monday called the president’s comments “just outrageous and inappropriate.” Hogan, the new chairman of the National Governors Association, said he recently gave an address at the NGA about the angry and divisive politics that “are literally tearing America apart.”

“I think enough is enough,” Hogan said on the C4 Radio Show in Baltimore. “I mean, people are just completely fed up with this kind of nonsense, and why are we not focused on solving the problems and getting to work instead of who’s tweeting what, and who’s calling who what kind of names. I mean, it’s just absurd.”

Michael Steele, the state’s former lieutenant governor who went on to serve as the national chairman of the Republican National Committee, said it was “reprehensible to talk about the city the way” Trump did, but he hoped the attention would elevate the conversation about how to help urban areas, and he invited the president to be a part of the conversation.

“Put down the cellphone and the tweeting and come walk the streets in this community so that you can see firsthand the good and the difficult that needs to be addressed, and let’s do it together,” Steele told the radio show.

Speaking in television interviews on Sunday, acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said Trump was reacting in frustration to the Democrats’ unrelenting investigations and talk of impeachment. He said Trump swung hard at Cummings and his Baltimore district because he believes such Capitol Hill critics are neglecting serious problems back home in their zeal to unfairly undermine his presidency.

“I understand that everything that Donald Trump says is offensive to some people,” Mulvaney said. But he added: “The president is pushing back against what he sees as wrong. It’s how he’s done it in the past, and he’ll continue to do it in the future.”

Mulvaney, a former congressman, said he understood why some people could perceive Trump’s words as racist.

Mulvaney said Trump’s words were exaggerated for effect — “Does the president speak hyperbolically? Absolutely” — and meant to draw attention to Democratic-backed investigations of the Republican president and his team in Washington.

He asserted that Trump’s barbs were a reaction to what the president considered to be inaccurate statements by Cummings about conditions in which children are being held in detention at the U.S.-Mexico border.

At a hearing last week, Cummings accused a top administration official of wrongly calling reports of filthy, overcrowded border facilities “unsubstantiated.”

“When the president hears lies like that, he’s going to fight back,” Mulvaney said.

The president has tried to put racial polarization at the center of his appeal to his base of voters, tapping into anxieties about demographic and cultural changes.

Cummings is leading multiple investigations of the president’s governmental dealings. In his direct response to Trump on Twitter, Cummings said: “Mr. President, I go home to my district daily. Each morning, I wake up, and I go and fight for my neighbors. It is my constitutional duty to conduct oversight of the Executive Branch. But, it is my moral duty to fight for my constituents.”

Cummings has also drawn the president’s ire for investigations touching on his family members serving in the White House. His committee voted along party lines Thursday to authorize subpoenas for personal emails and texts used for official business by top White House aides, including Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner.

Earlier this month, Trump drew bipartisan condemnation following his call for Democratic Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan to get out of the U.S. “right now.” He said that if the lawmakers “hate our country,” they can go back to their “broken and crime-infested” countries.

All four lawmakers of color are American citizens and three of the four were born in the U.S.

[Associated Press]

DONALD TRUMP FALSELY CLAIMS HE DIDN’T HAVE ‘TALKING POINTS’ ON MINORITY CONGRESSWOMEN, DESPITE PHOTOS

In the aftermath of fierce condemnation for issuing racist tweets at minority congresswomen earlier this month, President Donald Trump lashed out on Twitter Monday, labeling reports that his decision to double down on his remarks involved pre-determined talking points and opposition research as “fake news.”

Trump falsely claimed “there were no talking points” just days after issuing a speech at the White House on July 15, where he used a “Made in America” event intended toshowcase U.S. manufacturing to again tell four Democratic lawmakers—Alexandria Ocasio Cortez of New York, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota—they “can leave right now” if they were dissatisfied with the U.S.

Photos captured by a Washington Post photographer showed that Trump’s notes did, in fact, have talking points about the progressive lawmakers who’ve been dubbed “The Squad”—all of whom are U.S. citizens and of whichthree were born in the U.S. The president’s notes specifically referenced Omar, a Somali refugee who came to the U.S. in 1995 after fleeing her country years earlier because of a civil war.

“She came here at 10 years old and is now a congresswoman. That could ONLY happen in America,” Trump’s notes read. “It is SAD that these women have a record of saying anti-Semitic and anti-American things all the time.”

Trump’s prepared remarks continued: “It’s actually DANGEROUS — because it seems like they hate America. My point was if you are not happy here, you can leave.”

At a campaign rally in Greenville, North Carolina, Wednesday evening, attendees chanted “send her back” after Trump again accused Omar in his prepared remarks of not being a proud American, being sympathetic to al-Qaeda and saying she “looks down with contempt on hardworking Americans.”

Trump’s Monday morning tweet also included denials about information in a Washington Poststory, which said that “advisers wrote new talking points and handed him reams of opposition research on the four congresswomen.” According to the article, allies, aides and confidants reportedly struggled to relay to the president why his remarks that “The Squad” should “go back” to the “totally broken and crime infested places from which they came” were racist and that he should pivot to new messages.

“The Amazon Washington Post front page story yesterday was total Fake News. They said ‘Advisors wrote new talking points and handed him reams of opposition research on the four Congresswomen.’ Now really, does that sound like me?” Trump wrote in a series of tweets. “What advisors, there were no talking points,……..except for those stated by me, & ‘reams of paper’ were never given to me. It is a made up story meant to demean & belittle. The Post had no sources. The facts remain the same, that we have 4 Radical Left Congresswomen who have said very bad things about Israel & our Country!”

However, Trump did not respond to the images of his talking points that were taken by photographers last week.

In another tweet, Trump continued to berate “The Squad,” calling them “a very Racist group of troublemakers who are young, inexperienced, and not very smart.”

Following Trump’s racist tweets, the Democratic-led House moved swiftly last week to pass a resolution of condemnation. But the formal rebuke to the president only mustered support from four Republican members. Some of the few GOP representatives who publicly condemned Trump failed to vote for the resolution.

The four freshmen congresswomen that make up”The Squad” have hit back repeatedly at Trump on Twitter and in comments to reporters. The women have quickly becomepolitical firebrands, often making headlines with their strong ridicule of Trump and even sometimes acting as a thorn in the side of Democratic leadership.

“This is the agenda of white nationalists, whether it is happening in chat rooms or it’s happening on national TV. And now, it’s reached the White House garden,” Omar said last week at a press conference with her colleagues of “The Squad.”

“He would love nothing more than to divide our country based on race, religion, gender orientation, or immigration status,” the freshman lawmaker continued, “because this is the only way he knows he can prevent the solidarity of us working together across all of our differences.”

[Newsweek]

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