NEWS     SATURDAY,  OCTOBER  6, 2018    NEWS

Kavanaugh has votes to be confirmed after Collins' tour de force speech
Sen. Susan Collins delivered a masterful defense of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh on Friday, and moments later a key Democrat also announced his support, virtually ensuring Judge Kavanaugh’s elevation to the high court. Ms. Collins, a Maine Republican who had been the most-watched senator in the chamber ahead of the vote, took a scalpel to Democratic objections on both legal and moral grounds, defended Republicans’ handling of sensitive sexual assault allegations, and blasted outside interest groups for plumbing the “rock bottom” in their desperation to try to defeat Judge Kavanaugh. “I will vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh,” Ms. Collins said, drawing applause from her colleagues, many of whom came to the floor to hear her tour de force defense of the political center. Washington Times
VOA VIEW: Collins said it straight and right.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski: Brett Kavanaugh is not 'the right man for the court at this time'
The Alaska Republican told reporters she hadn’t made up her mind about how she would vote until she entered the chamber Friday morning, and had been wrestling with evaluating Judge Kavanaugh based on his qualifications and the swirling allegations of sexual assault. “I believe we are dealing with issues right now that are bigger than a nominee in how we assure that our institutions — not only the legislative branch but the judicial branch — continue to be respected,” Ms. Murkowski said. “I took the very, very difficult vote that I did. I believe Brett Kavanaugh is a good man. I believe he is a good man. It just might be, in my view, he is not the right man for the court at this time,” she added. The judge cleared a filibuster on a 51-49 vote. Washington Times
VOA VIEW: Traitor Murkowski is a political loser.

President Trump’s ignorant attack on George Soros
Trump goes lower. Earlier today, the president may have reached a personal worst, by tweeting that the women who confronted Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) in a Senate elevator, were “professionals” who were “paid by (George) Soros and others.” If it was anyone else, this would seem to be base anti-Semitism. Soros is both rich and Jewish, and is officially and incessantly reviled in his native Hungary by the right-wing, authoritarian regime of Prime Minister Viktor Orban. The campaign there against Soros, who survived the Holocaust through guile and luck, could be called vaguely anti-Semitic, but there is nothing vague about it. Soros is the representation of the rich Jew, an anti-Semitic stereotype which, in Hungary at least, endures. Washington Post
VOA VIEW" Liberal media bias - she was a paid Soros hack.

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Tropical disturbance in Caribbean could threaten Gulf Coast next week
A disorganized low pressure system has been festering over the western Caribbean Sea all week, and the odds of it forming and affecting the Gulf Coast are increasing. It is not in any hurry though, so if it should develop, it would not reach the Gulf Coast until at least Wednesday. If it reaches tropical storm status, its name will be Michael. Most, though not all, forecast models now predict a tropical storm will reach the northern Gulf Coast sometime between Wednesday and Saturday next week, depending on how soon it starts crawling out of the Caribbean. If the storm directly affects the Gulf Coast, there is a wide range of possibilities about exactly where it comes ashore. Simulations suggest the landfall point could span from western Louisiana to South Florida. Washington Post

'I can see 2022 from my house': Palin taunts Murkowski ahead of Kavanaugh vote
Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski, a crucial Republican swing vote in Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court, received a playful prodding from the former governor of Alaska on Twitter. "I can see 2022 from my house," Sarah Palin tweeted on Friday afternoon, mentioning Murkowski. The tweet was widely viewed as a thinly-veiled threat to challenge Murkowski in her 2022 reelection campaign to the Senate. Earlier this year, Palin expressed a willingness to run for public office again, according to The Hill. The publication reported that she told Fox News host Mark Levin in April that she was glad she joined the McCain ticket and would do it again "in a heartbeat." USA Today
VOA VIEW: Murkowski is a big loser.

President Trump signs bill that will regulate airline seat sizes
It’s official: The U.S. government will soon regulate the distance between airline seats. President Donald Trump on Friday signed legislation passed by Congress that extends FAA policy for another five years. The FAA Reauthorization Bill includes several provisions that will affect air travelers. One provision that’s attracted the most attention is the “Seat Egress in Air Travel (SEAT) Act,” which directs the FAA to set standards for the size of airline seats. The agency has one year to come up with minimum requirements for seat width and for the space between seats. While many have praised the bill as an attempt airlines to continuing to shrink seat sizes, there’s no guarantee that will happen. USA Today

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More Americans now trust politicians than at any time since 2008
Americans' trust in politicians has reached a 10-year high -- with 55 percent saying they have a "great deal" or "fair amount" of confidence in them, Gallup research indicates. The survey Thursday found the number of people with trust and confidence in politicians is up 7 percent from last year, and 13 percent from a record low of 42 percent in 2016. The last time Gallup saw the majority of Americans trusting politicians was a decade ago, at 66 percent. UPI

Iraq approved for purchase of armed Bell 407GX helicopters
The U.S. State Department this week approved the sale of Bell 407GX helicopters to Iraq for an estimated cost of $82.5 million. The sale, announced Thursday by the State Department, is meant to "help compensate" for the combat loss of seven IA407 helicopters, as well as increase the combat effectiveness of the Iraqi Security Forces, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said Friday. UPI

Citing his 'temperament,' American Bar Association will re-evaluate Brett Kavanaugh's high rating
he American Bar Association said Friday that it will re-evaluate its high rating of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh after his combative, tear-streaked Senate testimony last week, signaling doubts about the judge's temperament. "New information of a material nature regarding temperament" during the hearing prompted the reopening, the ABA said Friday. The ABA committee that reviews federal judges awards ratings based on three criteria: integrity, professional competence and judicial temperament. The national lawyers' organization told the Senate Judiciary Committee that its team of internal reviewers "does not expect to complete a process and revote" before the anticipated final confirmation vote Saturday. The process has become rancorous after Christine Blasey Ford's allegations that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her when both were teens. Chicago Tribune
VOA VIEW: The ABA would be foolish to change its rating.

US unemployment rate falls to lowest level since 1969
US figures have shown the lowest jobless rate since the year of the first moon landings, keeping the world’s largest economy on course for further interest rate rises. Eagerly awaited figures for jobs and wages showed less inflationary pressure in the world’s biggest economy than had been feared, but still pointed to more hikes by the Federal Reserve. Financial markets had been braced for a sharp sell off had the latest monthly payroll numbers indicated faster employment growth and pay increases in September, which could have paved the way for faster-than-expected monetary tightening by the US central bank. As a result of the figures undershooting the most optimistic expectations, losses were smaller than feared in early trading in New York but all the major US markets ended down with the biggest losses on the tech heavy Nasdaq exchange. Guardian

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Toyota recalling 807,000 U.S. Prius models to fix stalling issue
Toyota is recalling 807,000 Prius hybrids in the U.S., and over 2.4 million hybrids worldwide to address a stalling issue. Some of the vehicles built between 2008 and 2014 may suffer hybrid system faults that put the cars into a “failsafe” mode that could cause them to lose power and stall, although steering and braking would still work, Toyota said. The U.S. portion of the safety action covers 2010-2014 Prius hatchbacks, and 2012-2014 Prius V wagons, which will require a software update. Some of the cars have already been recalled for a separate drivetrain issue. Fox

Renewed DeSantis push has Gillum campaigning more defensively
For much of the first half of the general election campaign, Democrat Andrew Gillum has enjoyed a consistent if thin lead that few in his party might have expected when he won its nomination for governor. But a renewed offensive from Republican rival Ron DeSantis has pushed the Tallahassee mayor’s campaign this week to parry on the economy, on Israel and on his record handling the city’s first hurricane in decades, in an early sign that the already narrow race may become even tighter. Some of the defensive moves the Gillum campaign has had to make have been the result of its own missteps: The campaign let go of its director of youth outreach, Manny Orozco-Ballestas, last weekend after several offensive tweets from 2012 and 2013 surfaced, and a businessman brought onto a call with reporters to refute attacks on Gillum’s economic plan had to apologize Thursday for calling Florida a “s---hole” regarding government support to the needy. Miami Herald
VOA VIEW: Gillum is a liberaal idiot loved by the liberal media.

Head of Interpol Disappears, and Eyes Turn Toward China
When a high-ranking official in China’s public security system was elected president of Interpol in 2016, leaders in Beijing rejoiced. The promotion lent respectability to China’s notoriously opaque and arbitrary criminal justice system. But now that same official, Meng Hongwei, 64, has himself mysteriously disappeared, after recently returning to China. Even the country’s most internationally prominent police officer, it seems, can vanish without an official murmur from Beijing. No one seems to know where Mr. Meng is or why he suddenly disappeared, even though he leads an organization that serves as a kind of United Nations for the world’s police forces. New York Times

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Bernie Sanders reacts to Amazon slashing stock, incentive bonuses for hourly workers
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) called on Amazon on Thursday to ensure that all of its hourly workers will receive a boost in compensation after the company drew criticism for slashing stock options and incentive-based pay even as it hiked its minimum wage to $15 per hour. “Our understanding is that the vast majority of Amazon workers are going to see wage increases, including some very significant increases as the minimum wage goes up to $15 an hour,” Sanders said in a statement to FOX Business. “I would hope that as a result of Amazon’s new policy, no worker, especially long-time employees, sees a reduction in total compensation. Amazon can afford to make all workers whole and should do that.” Fox

Booker: FBI Kavanaugh report not a sincere effort to find truth
Senator Cory Booker talks with Rachel Maddow about the unusual process for Senators to read the FBI investigation report on Brett Kavanaugh, the report's insufficiency, and what the future consequences of Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation might be. MSNBC

Georgetown professor no longer teaching after profane tweet about Kavanaugh supporters
An anti-Trump professor, Dr. Carol Christine Fair, is no longer teaching classes at Georgetown University following calls for the outspoken liberal educator to be fired. Fair stirred up controversy on Twitter when she wished miserable deaths upon Republican senators supporting Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. “Look at [this] chorus of entitled white men justifying a serial rapist’s arrogated entitlement,” she wrote. “All of them deserve miserable deaths while feminists laugh as they take their last gasps. Bonus: we castrate their corpses and feed them to swine? Yes.” Her account was de-verified and temporarily suspended Tuesday for violating Twitter’s rules, but until Friday, the university had taken no action against the controversial professor. New York Post
VOA VIEW: Sick professor.

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Trade wars and protectionism threaten global shipping, warns UN agency
The warning from UNCTAD, the UN Conference on Trade and Development, follows a “healthy” four per cent increase in global seaborne commerce in 2017. “While the prospects for seaborne trade are positive, these are threatened by the outbreak of trade wars and increased inward-looking policies,” UNCTAD Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi said. “Escalating protectionism and tit-for-tat tariff battles will potentially disrupt the global trading system which underpins demand for maritime transport.” According to the Review of Maritime Transport 2018, 10.7 billion tonnes of goods were transported last year and nearly half were dry bulk commodities. These include iron ore bound for China, which is described as the “main factor” in recent global shipping growth. This positive trend is forecast to continue at a rate of 3.8 per cent by volume, until 2023, the UNCTAD report says. UN

House Democrat Promises Kavanaugh Investigation if Party Wins Control
House Democrats will open an investigation into accusations of sexual misconduct and perjury against Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh if they win control of the House in November, Representative Jerrold Nadler, the New York Democrat in line to be the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, said on Friday. Speaking on the eve of Judge Kavanaugh’s confirmation vote this weekend, Mr. Nadler said that there was evidence that Senate Republicans and the F.B.I. had overseen a “whitewash” investigation of the allegations and that the legitimacy of the Supreme Court was at stake. He sidestepped the issue of impeachment. New York Times

Charges against Mel Watt are troubling
Allegations that Mel Watt, the former North Carolina representative who now heads the Federal Housing Finance Agency, sexually harassed an employee are disappointing, to say the least. They reflect poorly on our state and lend credence to the stereotype of politicians whose power goes to their heads and leads them to take privileges they don’t deserve. Simone Grimes, an FHFA supervisory program management analyst, told members of the House Financial Services Committee on Sept. 27 that Watt made dozens of sexual advances toward her, withheld a promised pay raise over her refusal of his advances and was protected by senior agency officials, The Associated Press reported. Chalotte Observer

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UN chief urges peaceful, free and fair elections in Cameroon
In a statement from his spokesperson, the UN chief also called on all stakeholders to “exercise restraint before, during and after the election.” He also urged all Cameroonians to exercise their democratic rights, urging all candidates “to address any complaints related to the electoral process through established legal and constitutional channels.” Nine candidates are contesting the elections to the country’s highest body, according to media reports. Further in the statement, the Secretary-General condemned all threats of violence or acts of intimidation by any group and reiterated that all grievances should be addressed through inclusive dialogue. “The United Nations stands ready to provide support in this regard,” added the statement. UN

Brett Kavanaugh's nomination could have huge impact on midterm elections
Brett Kavanaugh's nomination to the Supreme Court -- and likely confirmation -- could have a huge impact on midterm elections, now just 32 days away. On Friday, reaction to Sen. Susan Collin's speech in support of Kavanaugh was immediate from Maine Democrats. It was another indication of the intensity felt on both sides of the debate. In Rochester, Minnesota, on Thursday, the line for President Trump's rally seemed endless, and so was the anger toward Democrats over their treatment of Kavanaugh. "Voting is going to be a high turnout, just because of what the Democrats are doing. I think they've pissed people off and they kind of dug their own grave," one person said. CBS

More than 6,500 children missing in Mexico, new data reveals
More than 6,600 children and adolescents have disappeared in Mexico over the past dozen years as the country’s rising drug violence spread to previously placid corners of the country claiming victims among even the youngest citizens. The National Registry of Missing and Disappeared Persons has recorded 37,435 individuals as unaccounted for as of April 2018. Some 18% of the missing are minors, according to local media reports on Friday. Bringing up the bodies: Mexico's missing students draw attention to 20,000 'vanished' others.  Mexicans have been going missing in alarming numbers since the country launched its militarized crackdown on drug cartels in December 2012. Guardian

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