News & Politics

The Morning Briefing: Leaker Nabbed, Biden's Back, Franken Cancels Maher and Much, Much More

EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NO MERCHANDISING. IN THE US EXCLUSIVE RATES APPLY* Trump tweets; Piers interview with Trump VT (Rex Features via AP Images)

Happy Tuesday Morning!

Here’s what’s on President Trump’s agenda today:

  • In the morning, President Donald J. Trump will receive his daily intelligence briefing.
  • The President will then meet with National Security Advisor H. R. McMaster.
  • In the afternoon, the President will meet with House and Senate leadership.
  • The President will then sign a bill. In the evening, the President will have dinner with Members of Congress.

The feds nab a leaker

Reality Leigh Winner is a 25-year-old government contractor who allegedly leaked classified documents to a news outlet.

NBC News confirmed that 25-year-old Reality Leigh Winner was arrested on charges involving the leak of a top-secret National Security Agency document to The Intercept that detailed a Russian hacking operation targeting US voting systems.

Winner was hired by Pluribus International Corporation in early February and held top secret security clearance, the Justice Department said. The company’s clients include the Defense Intelligence Agency, US Army, and US Central Command.

CNN says about the information Ms. Winner allegedly removed:

US intelligence officials tell CNN that the information has not changed the January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment, which found: “Russian intelligence obtained and maintained access to elements of multiple US state or local electoral boards. DHS assesses that the types of systems Russian actors targeted or compromised were not involved in vote tallying.”

Remember that highlighted part when you hear the media bleating about how the election was hacked.

Here is some more information about Ms. Winner. The Daily Caller writes:

Reality Leigh Winner’s apparent social media footprint also shows that she is a supporter of other liberal causes, including the Women’s March and the Islamic Society of North America, the Muslim civil rights group.

She also recently referred to President Trump as a “piece of shit” because of his position on the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) protests.

And she seems to dislike white people (she’s white):

That’s according to a tweet the alleged leaker, Reality Winner, sent in February. Winner, who is herself white, tweeted at rapper Kanye West that he should make a shirt declaring whiteness an act of terror.

“@kanyewest you should make a shirt that says, ‘being white is terrorism’,” she tweeted.

She’s sounds lovely.

ISIS claims responsibility for Australian hostage-situation

Following a hostage situation in Australia yesterday that left three police officers injured and one person dead, ISIS has stepped forward to claim responsibility for the attack. The hostage taker, Yacqub Khayre, was familiar to authorities.

The hostage-taker, named as Yacqub Khayre, had been known to security forces for almost a decade and had been cleared of involvement in a plot to attack an army barracks in Sydney in 2009, Chief Commissioner of Victoria Police Graham Ashton told the Australian Broadcasting Corp.

“A soldier of Islamic State carried out the attack in Melbourne, Australia in response to the calls for targeting the citizens of the coalition states,” the group’s Amaq news agency said in a statement.

Khayre “had a long criminal history and was on parole after being released from prison late last year.”

Not welcome: London mayor wants British government to cancel Trump visit

London Mayor Sadiq Khan wants the British government to cancel President Trump’s visit after a nasty Twitter fight broke out between the two.

“I don’t think we should roll out the red carpet to the president of the USA in the circumstances where his policies go against everything we stand for,” Khan said in an interview with Britain’s Channel 4 News.

“When you have a special relationship it is no different from when you have got a close mate. You stand with them in times of adversity but you call them out when they are wrong. There are many things about which Donald Trump is wrong.”

This is not the first time Khan has tried to cancel a Trump visit to Britain.

He pointed to Trump’s executive order barring refugees and people from seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the U.S. as his reason, calling the order “cruel.”

“In those circumstances, we shouldn’t be rolling out the red carpet,” he said.

Prime Minister Theresa May was asked to condemn Trump’s comments yesterday but did not do so.

The Prime Minister was also repeatedly asked to condemn Trump’s comments yesterday. However, while backing Khan as “doing a very good job” for London, May refused to explicitly criticise the president.

Khan, who last night held a vigil in memory of those who had died in the attacks, said the UK should not be afraid to openly disagree with the US.

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson told the media that President Trump’s visit will go forward as planned. “The invitation has been issued and accepted and I see no reason to change that,” said Johnson.

Franken cancels appearance on Bill Maher show

Senator Al Franken (D-MN) has backed out of an appearance on “Real Time with Bill Maher” following Maher’s use of the “n-word” during an episode last week.

“What Bill Maher said was inappropriate and offensive, which is why he made the decision not to appear on the next episode of ‘Real Time.’ He was glad to see Bill, who the senator considers to be a good friend, apologize and express sincere regret for his comment,” said a Franken spokesman.

Maher apologized for his word choice. “I regret the word I used in the banter of a live moment,” he said in a statement at the time. “The word was offensive and I regret saying it and am very sorry.”

Senate wants to Trump to move Israel embassy to Jerusalem

On Monday night, the Senate voted 90-0 on a resolution to move the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

The measure includes language that “calls upon the president and all United States officials to abide by” a 1995 law that urged then-President Bill Clinton to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.

Currently, the U.S. issues a waiver every six months to keep the embassy in Tel Aviv.

Said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who also sponsored the bill: “While we know that Israel continues to face a number of threats, bipartisan passage of this resolution will serve as yet another indication of the United States’ commitment to standing by our Israeli friends.”

Biden, Baby

Former Veep Joe Biden will appear at Mitt Romney’s fancy pants donor retreat weekend.

Biden will be interviewed by Romney during a Friday evening event in Park City, Utah, at the invitation-only summit, according to a Biden spokesman and participants briefed on the schedule. The speaker lineup for what is traditionally a gathering of Romney allies is packed with high-profile Republicans, among them House Speaker Paul Ryan and Sens. Lindsey Graham and John McCain.

“Biden is attending because he believes in bipartisanship and the importance of keeping good lines of communication open across the aisle,” said Biden spokesperson Kate Bedingfield.

Biden recently formed a PAC called American Possibilities where he can raise money for candidates and travel around “doing politics.”

“We are honored once again to gather leaders of business and industry, innovators from across the globe, and political representatives from both sides of the aisle to discuss the future of American leadership,” conference executive director Matt Waldrip said.

Other morsels:

CDC says to stop petting your chickens

Two arrested in Oakland warehouse fire

High school art display to Trump: burn in hell

Shoplifter shoved 15 motor oil bottles and 30 DVDs into pants, deputies say

Bernie pockets $800k to write book

Should we have more male nudity on TV?

Hillary calls for religious unity

That’s all I’ve got, now go beat back the angry mob!