Michael Bloomberg on Gun Control: 'This Is a Battle for the Hearts and Minds of America'
Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg promoted his new $50 million gun control campaign on NBC’s “Today” show this morning, in an aggressive financial push to fight the National Rifle Association’s influence on gun policy.
Bloomberg plans to use the money to merge his Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America into a new group called “Everytown for Gun Safety.”
“This is not a battle of dollars, this is a battle for the hearts and minds of America so that we can protect our children, protect innocent people,” he said.
Bloomberg highlighted the amount of gun related deaths in America, explaining why he felt the need to continue fighting.
“We’re the only civilized country in the world that has this problem,” he said.
He also argued that he was not pushing for gun control, but rather keeping guns away from minors, criminals, and the mentally ill.
“It isn’t gun control. This is simply making sure that people everybody agrees should not be allowed to buy a gun - criminals, minors, and people with psychiatric problems - make sure they can’t buy guns - nobody is going to take anyone’s gun away nobody is going to stop you from hunting, target practice or protecting yourself,” he said.
Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:16:00 GMT
Facing Resignation Calls, Mississippi GOP Chairman Dubs Tea Party Leaders 'Fanatical'
The chairman of the Mississippi GOP, Joe Nosef, reacted angrily to Tea Party groups calling for his resignation this week, accusing one local activist of secretly working to elect Democrats and saying some “fanatical” Tea Party groups could jeopardize the GOP's hold on a senate seat in one of the most Republican states in the nation, according to emails obtained by Breitbart News.
In the emails, Joe Nosef, the chairman of the Mississippi Republican party, told Mississippi Tea Party president Janis Lane that “help[ing] Democrats win...appears to be your goal.”
Nosef also emailed to a list of Republicans that the groups calling for his head were so crazy they could imperil the GOP's hold on Sen. Thad Cochran's senate seat.
“These people are getting so fanatical [that] this will put everything in danger regardless of who wins” the upcoming GOP primary, he wrote, adding, “I refuse to continue to spend time dealing with these people.”
The incendiary emails – and their being leaked to Breitbart News by an anonymous source – are the latest escalations in an erupting primary battle that pits the Yazoo City machine of lobbyist Haley Barbour and veteran appropriator Cochran against the upstart state senator Chris McDaniel and the conservative outside groups that are pouring in resources to support him.
After Lane called for Nosef's resignation Monday over negative comments Nosef made about McDaniel in national media, a series of local Tea Party groups followed suit.
But Nosef, in comments to Breitbart News Tuesday, called the mounting calls for him to quit “silliness.”
“I have probably received more encouragement from all corners and all groups over the last couple of days than the last couple of years, including many tea party members,” Nosef said. “Many people are finally fed up with these attempts to divide our party. Plus the pay for the job is too good (zero dollars),” Nosef said.
Lane's call for Nosef to resign stemmed from comments he made to NBC News about a brewing controversy about McDaniel that turned out to be much ado about nothing. It was reported that McDaniel's name was listed as a speaker on a flyer for a pro-2nd amendment rally that had featured a confederate memorabilia store. However, McDaniel said he never attended the rally nor told the organizers he would attend, and no evidence has emerged to contradict him since.
But then the other side of the story came out. Nosef issued a demand to NBC News that McDaniel immediately explain himself, comments that were picked up by MSNBC host Chris Matthews and used to blast McDaniel.
The flyer controversy, along with new reports about colorful comments McDaniel made on talk radio a decade ago about Muslims, slavery reparations, and Mexico have set off an undercurrent of race in a primary battle between two white men that Nosef said has party elders concerned.
Indeed, in the emails, Nosef suggested Lane may have been upset with him because he criticized the era of racial segregation in his comments to NBC.
“In addition I told the reporter that we were NOT better off during segregation,” Nosef wrote. “Is that what you have a problem with?”
Lane, in a phone interview, emphatically rejected Nosef's allegation and warned that she would work to hold Cochran, Barbour, and the rest of the GOP establishment to the same standards on race that they are setting for McDaniel.
“The grassroots conservatives in our wonderful great state, we know that this is our opportunity to make a change,” Lane said. “And we got to do it. We’re working hard to do it. We are solid with Chris McDaniel. He is the chosen man for this hour. It’s sad that Thad [Cochran] just doesn’t drop out of the race. That’s why I did this. All of us in the Tea Party have let everything else [that Nosef and other establishment GOP officials in Mississippi have done] go until that interview [with NBC News]. I was texting with others here in the leadership in the Tea Party and said I was livid and have got to respond.”
In a phone interview, Lane told Breitbart News the point she is making is that Cochran and Barbour should be held to the same standard as McDaniel—and that Nosef shouldn’t give them a pass if he’s going to make such criticisms of McDaniel, regardless of merit. “First of all, nobody should have backed this at all,” Lane said, noting her belief is that the standard applied to McDaniel by Nosef was unfair. “But they did.”
Meanwhile, pressure is continuing to build on Nosef.
On Tuesday morning, the statewide Tea Party in Mississippi called on Gov. Phil Bryant to step in and force Nosef to apologize to the movement.
“As the self-proclaimed First Tea Party Governor in the nation, Gov. Bryant well understands what it takes to build consensus within the Republican Party,” Laura Van Overschelde, the chairman of the Mississippi Tea Party, said in a statement. “It is our hope that Gov. Bryant can guide Mr. Nosef, and that he will show leadership in this regard by asking Mr. Nosef to publicly rescind the statements Nosef made to NBC and to Paul Gallo.”
A spokeswoman for Bryant has not responded to phone calls or emails from Breitbart News about this matter generally, or about that specific press release Tuesday morning from the state Tea Party.
Nosef told Breitbart News on Tuesday that by “these people,” in the email he didn’t mean all Tea Partiers. “I would never say I am done working with the tea party itself,” Nosef said. “In fact as a tea party member who actually is out there in the state working told me today - the real grassroots tea party people don't care about all this inside baseball stuff. They are working to win elections. So I would never stop working with them. When I said ‘these people’ I was speaking of some of their leadership that is chronically against all of our elected officials. Literally these people believe our entire federal delegation needs to go. That's how different their leadership is than their voters.”
Wed, 16 Apr 2014 05:21:00 GMT
Mayor Julian Castro to Obama: Grant Temporary Amnesty to Family Members of DREAMers
San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro wants President Barack Obama to give temporary amnesty to illegal immigrants whose family members are U.S. citizens.
Castro, considered a potential vice presidential candidate for Democrats in 2016, believes Obama should extend the deferred action even more to those over 30 years of age and who may not have come to the country as children.
"We should look at people who have been here for more than ten years, who do not have a serious criminal record and who have family members who are United States citizens," Castro said in an interview before his debate Tuesday with Texas Lieutenant Governor candidate Dan Patrick. "My hope is that President Obama extends what he did with DACA [Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals] for the DREAMers to ease deportations for people without serious criminal records who have families in the United States."
Obama, through executive fiat, gave temporary amnesty and work permits last year to the children of illegal immigrants who are under 30 years of age, came to this country before they were 16 years of age, and meet other qualifications.
Castro, an American of Mexican descent, keynoted the 2012 Democratic National Convention and heads, according to Fox News Latino, the seventh most populous city in the country with 1.3 million people, 63 percent of whom are Hispanic.
After broad amnesty legislation lost momentum in Congress, amnesty activists have been pressuring Obama to take more unilateral actions to stop deportations and grant more forms of amnesty to illegal immigrants.
Wed, 16 Apr 2014 04:36:16 GMT
Street Evacuated as Two Backpacks Discovered Near Boston Marathon Finish Line
BOSTON (CBS)—The area near the finish line of the Boston Marathon was evacuated Tuesday night after two unattended backpacks were left at the finish line.
One of the bags is near the photo bridge on Boylston Street. The street was shut down between Fairfield and Dartmouth streets.
WBZ-TV photographers on scene say they saw a person with the backpack screaming “Boston Strong” before police cleared everyone from the area.
Read the rest of the story at CBS Boston.
Wed, 16 Apr 2014 00:42:00 GMT
NYPD Disbands Muslim Surveillance Program
On April 15th the New York Police Department (NYPD) announced that its Muslim surveillance unit had been disbanded.
The surveillance unit came "under fire by community activists who accused the department of abusing civil rights."
According to the Associated Press, the surveillance unit "relied on plainclothes officers to eavesdrop on people in bookstores, restaurants, and mosques."
Starting in 2011, "the AP documented that police had systematically spied on Muslim neighborhoods, listened in on sermons, infiltrated colleges, and photographed law-abiding citizens as part of a broad effort to watch communities where terror cells might operate."
This documentation came in a series of reports that "stirred debate over whether the NYPD was infringing on the civil rights of Muslims and illegally engaging in religious and ethnic profiling."
The AP reports also revealed then-police commissioner Ray Kelly "had brought in a CIA official to help develop an intelligence division unlike that of any other U.S. police department." This "prompted an investigation by the CIA's inspector general," which found the agency had not broken any laws forbidding it from "domestic spying."
However, the IG did criticize a CIA agent's involvement "without sufficient supervision."
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wed, 16 Apr 2014 00:33:37 GMT