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Sally Yates to testify on ousted National Security Adviser Flynn

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Political Editor – LeNora Millen

Former acting attorney general Sally Yates will testify Monday, May 8 before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee.  Yates’ long-awaited testimony is expected to be among the most significant to the Russia investigation; and will likely center on former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s ties to Russia.

Originally scheduled to testify last month, Yates’ appearance before the House Intelligence Committee was abruptly canceled.  According to various credible sources, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) canceled the hearing on Russia after the Trump administration voiced objections to him about her planned testimony.

During Yates’ scheduled appearance before Congress, Committee Chair Devin Nunes conducted his own personal investigation from the White House without contacting other members of the House Intelligence Committee.  The findings presented to Trump, according to Nunes, backed up President Trump’s wiretapping claim.  Nunes held a press conference stating that Trump’s transition officials, were incidentally surveilled.  Further tarnishing the investigation, Nunes briefed officials at the White House before speaking with his own committee.

Republican Chairman Nunes recused himself from his panel’s investigation into Russia’s meddling to disrupt the election. The decision from Nunes came shortly before the House Committee on Ethics announced that he was under investigation because of public reports that he “may have made unauthorized disclosures of classified information.”

House and Senate Democrats were eager to hear Yates testify in an open hearing rather than a closed session. Her testimony would not occur.   Multiple sources have stated that when Yates testifies she is expected to reveal that she believed former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn was “compromised.”

Yates notified the White House that Flynn had not been forthcoming about his statements to Vice President Pence about speaking with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the transition period.  Flynn also denied talking to Kislyak about U.S. sanctions against Russia—as the Obama administration began implementing sanctions.

Flynn was later fired after misleading Vice President Pence. The firing did not come without pushback from Trump.  There was a two-week delay between when the president fired Flynn and the time in which Yates notified the White House.

Congressional sources are interested in knowing why the White House was slow to react to Flynn’s action. During the period in question, the FBI counterintelligence investigation into whether Trump campaign officials were in collusion with the Russians was well underway.  As national security adviser, Flynn handled very sensitive information.

Flynn has since admitted filing official documents stating that he was a registered foreign agent during the period, which according to the law, is something that he should have revealed much earlier.

Yates was fired from the position as acting attorney general in January, after refusing to defend the Trump Administration’s travel ban in court.  In a letter addressing her actions, Sally Yates wrote,

“I am responsible for ensuring that the positions we take in court remain consistent with this institution’s solemn obligation to always seek justice and stand for what is right,”

White House press secretary Sean Spicer was of the opinion that Sally Yates “betrayed the Department of Justice by refusing to enforce a legal order designed to protect the citizens of the United States.”

Yates’ appearance on Monday will be her first testimony before Congress since being fired by President Trump.

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Business

Former Congressman Harold Ford Jr. Fired by Morgan Stanley for Alleged Misconduct

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Harold Ford Jr., a former congressman, was fired by the financial services firm Morgan Stanley following allegations of misconduct, NBC confirmed on Thursday.

Morgan Stanley declined to say specifically what prompted the firing. The allegations were presented after a woman who was not employed at the firm accused Mr. Ford of acting inappropriately in a professional setting.

Mr. Ford’s termination reported by HuffPost as an exclusive has been challenged by the former Congressman as “false claims.”

Harold Ford Jr., a former congressman, was fired from his position as a managing director at the financial services firm Morgan Stanley for what the company described as behavior “inconsistent with our values.”CreditMike Groll/Associated Press

In a statement provided by his lawyer, Mr. Ford denied the sexual harassment allegations, stating in a tweet on Thursday that he will be bringing legal action against the reporter, for making false claims against him, as well as Morgan Stanley for wrongful termination.

“This simply did not happen,” Mr. Ford wrote. “I have never forcibly grabbed any woman or man in my life.” He added that socializing with members of the press was part of his job, and said that “false claims like this undermine the real silence breakers.”

Mr. Ford served five terms in Congress as a Democrat representing a Tennessee district after first being elected in 1996—serving as Congressman from 1997 to 207.

He joined Morgan Stanley as a managing director and senior client-relationship manager in 2011 as a vice chairman and senior policy adviser at Bank of America.

Amid the heightened scrutiny of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior toppling key figures in the entertainment and political arena, Mr. Ford is the latest high profiled man to lose his job in recent days for similar allegations.

Time magazine on Wednesday named the “Silence Breakers” its Person of the Year. They shared personal stories about harassment and assault and sparked the #MeToo movement.

According to Time, the #MeToo became a hashtag, a movement, a reckoning. But it began, as great social change nearly always does, with individual acts of courage.

In a tweet acknowledging his thoughts on the “Silence Breaker” quite pointed in his statement, Mr. Ford said the following in regards to news of his firing on Thursday, “This simply did not happen.  I have never forcibly grabbed any woman or man in my life.”

In another tweet, Mr. Ford spoke about his professional demeanor and his tremendous respect for the brave women speaking out “in this important national dialogue.”  Mr. Ford was pointed in stating that false claims alleged against him “undermine the real “Silence Breakers.”

Mr. Ford appeared as a frequent guest on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” MSNBC – which is owned by NBC 4 New York’s parent company.

“We are looking into the report about Harold Ford Jr.,” a spokeswoman for MSNBC said. “During that time he won’t be a guest on MSNBC.”

LeNora Millen            12-7-17

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TV One Cancels Roland Martin’s Morning Show ‘News One Now’

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TV One is canceling Roland Martin’s morning show “News One Now,” Roland made the announcement in a tweet Wednesday.

“Fam, the sad news is true. The staff of @tvonetv #NewsnewOneNow was informed this afternoon that after four years of doing groundbreaking and award-winning work, the show will cease production at the end of the year,” Martin tweeted.

Martin, who thanked audiences for their support, said the last episode will air on Dec. 21.

Roland Martin’s morning show “NewsOne Now” was cancelled due to budget cuts according to various reports from reliable sources.

“They called a meeting on Wednesday and told the staff they were canceling the show. They’re having significant financial problems and they have to scale back,” a source said. “After four years of award-winning programming and distinguished service to our viewers as the only black daily newscast on television, the network has made the difficult decision to suspend the production of NewsOne Now as a daily morning news show. The last live show is scheduled [Dec. 21],” TV One’s interim GM, Michelle Rice wrote in a memo.

Host of “News One Now” Roland Martin speaks on stage during ColorofChange.org 10 Year Anniversary Gala. (Rob Kim/Getty Images for ColorOfChange)

The news of “NewsOne Now” cancellation shocked Martin and staffers according to sources. The network had recently expanded the morning show to two hours in September.

The memo added: “While we will continue our long-standing partnership with Roland Martin to ensure his important voice can be heard across all Urban One platforms examining issues of importance to the black community, we regret this decision adversely affects several of our valued colleagues whose positions will be eliminated with the suspension of the show.”

The network issued a statement on Twitter that read, “We are committed to providing quality news to our viewers and to our long-standing relationship with @rolandsmartin #NewsOneNow who will continue to have a voice on #TVOne.”

LeNora Millen         12-07-17

 

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Editor Picks

President Donald Trump will recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel

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Why declaring Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is so controversial?

The final status of Jerusalem has always been one of the most difficult and sensitive questions in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. If the United States declares Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, it would be seen as prejudging that question, deciding an issue that was supposed to be left to negotiations and breaking with the international consensus on the holy city.
Recognizing Jerusalem as the capital also moves the United States one major step closer to relocating the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, which would be seen as cementing Israeli sovereignty over the city.

More from CNN…

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