Tuesday's HOT MIC

Welcome to HOT MIC, PJ Media's daily liveblog. Join our editors and contributors for news updates and conversation throughout the day, and add your thoughts to the mix in our comments section at the bottom or by clicking on the comment bubbles on individual posts.  Be sure to save this link so you can find HOT MIC every day.

We finally have an update for you on the Redstone Arsenal incident that caused a lockdown of the facility earlier today. It appears the whole thing may have been a false alarm. According to WDTN:

Officials say two 911 calls triggered the active shooter alert at the Redstone Arsenal Tuesday.

Officials say they don’t know what happened with the two calls, but there was not an active shooter.

Officials acted on this incident and followed regular protocol as if there was an actual gunman.

As you can see from the tweet below, Redstone Arsenal is a massive facility, employing up to 40,000 individuals (many of them civilians) on any given day. It likely took several hours for law enforcement officials to search the compound and make sure it was secure before they could give the all-clear signal.

 

The Trump EPA is rescinding one of the biggest power grabs in the history of the US government; the so called "Waters of the U.S." rule that basically brought every stream, creek, and puddle under the benign rule of the Environmental Protection Agency.

The Obama-era rule, approved in 2015, gave EPA control over most of the waters in the U.S. -- even if they were on private property.

Daily Caller:

“We are taking significant action to return power to the states and provide regulatory certainty to our nation’s farmers and businesses,” Pruitt said in a statement.

In February, President Donald Trump ordered EPA to review WOTUS and, if necessary, replace it with a rule that interprets the term “navigable waters” in a “manner consistent with the opinion of Justice Antonin Scalia in Rapanos v. United States.”

The Obama administration did not rely on Scalia’s reasoning to craft WOTUS. EPA argued WOTUS was needed to clear up jurisdictional confusion in the wake of two U.S. Supreme Court cases.

Thirty-two states filed suit against EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to overturn the rule. Pruitt was party to the suit while attorney general of Oklahoma. WOTUS opponents saw an early victory in August 2015 when a federal judge in North Dakota issued a stay against the rule, suggesting it suffered from legal problems.

Republicans, industry and property owners saw the rule as a federal land grab. Republicans claimed the EPA’s rule was influenced by left-wing environmental activists.

Basically, if you lived on property with any "navigable" water, the EPA could tell you what you could and could not do on your own land. It turned the concept of private property on its head and would have wreaked havoc on our nation's farms.

It won't get a lot of publicity. But this is by far the biggest rollback of federal power in the Trump era.

 

 

Sara Carter and John Solomon have been killing it at Circa News lately, breaking one story after another which the mainstream media somehow keep missing.

In their latest bombshell, they report that acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe is currently being investigated by the Office of U.S. Special Counsel for violating the Hatch Act, which prohibits FBI agents from campaigning in political races.

Former Supervisory Special Agent Robyn Gritz, who is suing the FBI and McCabe alleging sexual discrimination during her 16-year career, filed the complaint alleging the social media photos are evidence of possible Hatch Act violations.

But the law imposes a tough standard for FBI employees, prohibiting partisan campaigning at any time. FBI employees “may not campaign for or against candidates or otherwise engage in political activity in concert with a political party, a candidate for partisan political office, or a partisan political group,” the law states.

Gritz argued in her complaint to the OSC that the photos suggest McCabe violated that standard.

“As a former FBI agent, it is my understanding that we were held to a higher level with regard to the Hatch Act,” Gritz wrote in her OSC complaint. “While I’m filing this complaint, I am doing it due to the large number of current, former and retired FBI agents who know if they were acting such as McCabe we’d be already on leave without pay, under investigation and assured of being in violation. We are all under the impression that these are, in fact, violations.”

Yesterday, the Circa team reported that the FBI's investigation of Michael Flynn may have been retaliation for the retired Army general's involvement in Gritz's sexual discrimination case.

Hey-hey, ho-ho, maybe it's time for acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe to go?

Easiest way to get out of a traffic ticket.

A Timeless Tale About A Drunk Woman and a Mechanical Bull

A patron of the popular Johnny Utah’s bar is suing the venue after they let her ride the mechanical bull while "visibly drunk" — leaving her with "life debilitating" injuries after she was tossed from the machine, a new lawsuit charges.

Jocelyn Burmeister was at Johnny Utah’s on March 18 when she was “violently thrown off the bull before having a chance to mount the device,” a suit filed in Manhattan Supreme Court Friday claims.

If bars are going to be held liable for drunk and stupid people being drunk and stupid then all the bars will go away and this won't be America anymore.

Also, it's good to be back here at the old PJ Media ranch.

Michael,

Let's face it: When it comes to the stink of the GOP ObamaCare Semi-Alternative, this fish started rotting from the head down.

President Trump.

Trump never wanted repeal, either. He wants to keep the popular parts of the law, and ditch the unpopular parts required to make the popular parts function (sort of). And Ryan and McConnell, bless their hearts, have done their level best to square Trump's circle.

Complicating things, Trump hasn't exactly stumped for any particular repeal or replacement, and has in fact been undercutting the support of his own party on Capitol Hill.

Anyway, I've spent the last few weeks on Instapundit trying to remind the GOP Congress to represent the actual people who sent them there to repeal the damn law, but it's clear they now have no intention of doing so. If they ever did. Maybe a President who was really interested in a serious repeal or reform bill could whip up a majority, but that's not the President we have, is it?

So if it's true that our representatives aren't representing us, it's also true that on this issue, President Trump has been anything but presidential.

The death of Obamacare has been greatly exaggerated, thanks to the meretricious ineptitude of the Permanent Bipartisan Fusion Party's junior wing. This just in:

Senate Republicans have delayed their plans to vote on repealing Obamacare this week, GOP senators said on Tuesday. The bill lacks sufficient support to even begin debate amid resistance from moderate and conservative Republicans.

Good. Repeal is what we voted for, not tweaking. If this brings down "leader" McConnell, so much the better.

 

Contemplating the terrifying prospect of a Mark Zuckerberg presidential candidacy, I realized the other day that we've seen this movie before. The strange, not-quite-human body language, the odd approach to language, the visible straining at human verisimilitude... why, yes, it's:

It doesn't look like it's going to happen this year, but the rumored prospect of Justice Anthony Kennedy's imminent retirement sent reliably liberal Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus into a tizzy:

Justice Kennedy, perhaps it is unfair to pile all this onto your shoulders, but is it really wise to subject an already divided country to even more turbulence? And to another nomination by this president, with his evident ignorance of the role of the judiciary and disdain for judicial independence?

Your career has been characterized by insistence on civility, respect for the dignity of all individuals and commitment to the rule of law — qualities absent in our president. Just read Trump’s tweets and ask yourself: Do I really want my successor named by this man?

No need to look back to the campaign, and his repugnant comments about the “Mexican” judge presiding over the Trump University fraud lawsuit. Just consider the president’s tweets about judicial rulings in the case that has now reached your own court. He blasted the “so-called judge”; assailed “slow and political” courts; and, most alarming, suggested that blood would be on the judiciary’s hands if a terrorist incident took place while his travel ban was being delayed...

Justice Kennedy, does the president who chose this man really deserve to name your replacement?

And this is about a Republican nominee. Imagine what's going to happen when Kennedy and Ruth Bader Ginsburg are gone from the court via death or retirement. The confirmation screaming will make Bork look like a sunny summer afternoon in the hammock.

So, let me get this straight. Just about every newspaper, every TV news program, every news radio program, every magazine, and every comic book around the world serves up a daily diet of hysterical, exaggerated, anti-Trump vitriol, quoting politicians, revolutionaries, celebrities, royalty, and ordinary people all saying basically the same thing: Trump is bad and his proposals are toxic to the world order.

And then...shocker! Pew publishes a study headlined, "U.S. Image Suffers as Publics Around the World Question Trump's Leadership."

Although he has only been in office a few months, Donald Trump’s presidency has had a major impact on how the world sees the United States. Trump and many of his key policies are broadly unpopular around the globe, and ratings for the U.S. have declined steeply in many nations. According to a new Pew Research Center survey spanning 37 nations, a median of just 22% has confidence in Trump to do the right thing when it comes to international affairs. This stands in contrast to the final years of Barack Obama’s presidency, when a median of 64% expressed confidence in Trump’s predecessor to direct America’s role in the world.

Is there any one human being on planet earth so vilified, so demonized, so lied about as Donald Trump? I mean, the guy is a putz, a lout, an ignoramus -- but really now, is he really worse than some of the benighted dictators and potentates in other countries? If the world got half as upset over Syria's President Assad for gassing his own people, the civil war would have ended years ago.

No, the Pew study isn't surprising at all. In fact, what might be surprising is that 22% of the world has been able to resist the avalanche of Trump hatred spewing from the media  since he took office.