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FILE PHOTO: ATP 1000 - Monte Carlo Masters
FILE PHOTO: Tennis – ATP 1000 – Monte Carlo Masters – Monte-Carlo Country Club, Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, France – April 18, 2019 Germany’s Alexander Zverev celebrates during his third round match against Italy’s Fabio Fognini REUTERS/Eric Gaillard

May 24, 2019

(Reuters) – Alexander Zverev continued his preparations for the French Open by sealing a hard-fought 7-5 6-7(6) 6-3 victory on Friday over Argentine Federico Delbonis to reach the Geneva Open final.

Zverev, whose form on clay has been patchy so far this season, takes on Chilean Nicolas Jarry on Saturday in his first ATP title clash on the surface since last year’s Italian Open.

Jarry earlier defeated Moldova’s Radu Albot 6-3 6-4 after saving four out of five break points in the contest. The world number 75 is seeking a first tour-level trophy in his second final.

“I am very happy with the win. I am very happy to be in the final and give myself an opportunity to win a tournament here,” Zverev, whose last title was at the ATP Finals in London in November, said.

“I made 15 aces so my serve was doing alright … Delbonis beat great players on this surface already, he has done well on this surface and I think winning against him is a good win.”

Zverev lost his only previous clash with Jarry in the second round of the Barcelona Open last month.

The world number five faces Australia’s John Millman in the opening round at Roland Garros, which begins on Sunday.

(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Alison Williams)

Source: OANN

Sen. Bernie Sanders‘ presidential campaign is once again taking aim at Joe Biden for the former vice president’s numerous top-dollar fundraising events from coast to coast.

In a fundraising email to supporters titled “We risk falling behind,” Sanders campaign manager Faiz Shakir wrote Friday that Biden’s “raising huge sums of money at large fundraising events all across the country. And these are not grassroots fundraising events.”

BIDEN CAMPAIGN TOUTS DIGITAL FUNDRAISING

He said “these are high-dollar functions hosted and attended by corporate lobbyists, health care executives, a Republican casino-CEO, and a union-busting lawyer among others.”

Faiz stressed the independent senator from Vermont’s small-dollar and grassroots approach to fundraising, highlighting that “the truth of the matter is that the American people are pretty sick and tired of the billionaire class of this country buying up our candidates and our elections. We can win elections without begging those people for money.”

Biden has been raising big bucks through small-dollar online donations – his campaign this week touted their online contributions and said those kinds of contributions made up the lion’s share of the whopping $6.3 million it raised in the 24 hours after the former vice president announced his candidacy last month.

But Biden’s also been holding some high-profile, high-end fundraisers. On his first night as a White House contender, he raised $700,000 at the Philadelphia home of a Comcast executive. He also hauled in big bucks at a Hollywood finance event earlier this month and at two Florida fundraisers this week.

The former vice president’s expected to hold two major fundraisers in Boston on June 5, and two more in New York City on June 17, sources close to Biden’s inner circle told Fox News.

Fundraising was far from then-Sen. Biden’s wheelhouse in his unsuccessful White House runs in the 1988 and 2008 presidential cycles. But so far, the third time appears to be the charm, as Biden’s raking in big bucks both at traditional fundraisers with deep-pocketed donors — which he’s opened up to media coverage in a move for transparency — as well as through online contributions.

Biden adviser Brandon English touted in an email earlier this week that the campaign’s “fundraising has been driven by rapid, massive growth over the last month.”

The courting of wealthy donors used to be commonplace, but this time around, the two progressive leaders in the Democratic nomination race — Sanders and Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts — have criticized Biden and sworn off those types of donations.

LATEST POLL NUMBERS IN 2020 DEMOCRATIC NOMINATION RACE

But Sanders reportedly has decided to now hold in-person fundraising events and has hired an official to oversee such finance events.

Source: Fox News Politics

IndyCar: 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500-Carb Day
May 24, 2019; Indianapolis, IN, USA; The #14 car reflects in the sunglasses of IndyCar series driver Tony Kanaan on Carb Day for the 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

May 24, 2019

By Steve Keating

INDIANAPOLIS (Reuters) – Tony Kanaan will start from the middle of the gird for the Indianapolis 500 but had his AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet out front on Friday, posting the top speed in final practise for the “the Greatest Spectacle in Racing”.

Kanaan, who needed 12 years before capturing a maiden Indy 500 in 2013, flashed the type of speed that could take him to Victory Lane a second time – recording a maximum 225.517 mph around the sprawling 2.5-mile oval in the final tuneup for Sunday’s race.

Rookie Santino Ferrucci had the second best effort behind the Brazilian pacesetter, clocking 225.486, while Japan’s Takuma Sato, the 2017 winner, was third quickest under overcast skies.

It marks the second consecutive year that Kanaan has dominated what is known as “Carb Day” and will be hoping it is a better omen than in 2018 when he led for 19 laps before crashing out 13 laps from the checkered flag.

“It was a good day for us, conditions look very similar to what we are going to see on Sunday,” said Kanaan, who qualified 16th and will start inside of row six alongside Graham Rahal and 2008 champion Scott Dixon.

“I wasn’t really happy with my car on Monday and I was extremely vocal about (that), and I think my engineers heard me and made it better today.”

Frenchman Simon Pagenaud flashed little of the speed he displayed putting his Team Penske Chevrolet on pole for Sunday’s race, producing the 22nd best time.

Teammate Australian Will Power, who is bidding to become the first back-to-back winner since Helio Castroneves in 2001 and 2002, was the quickest of the powerhouse Team Penske four-car entry, clocking the 10th fastest run.

Marco Andretti, who is trying to end the Andretti Curse and become the first member of his clan to win the Indy 500 since his grandfather Mario in 1969, was 23rd best.

Underscoring the ultra-competitiveness of this year’s race, every driver in the 33-car field, with the exception of rookie Ben Hanley, were within one second of each other.

“It is the most competitive field I have ever seen in my 18 years here,” said Kanaan. “Qualifying was really hard and it was extremely tight. I think it is going to be a difficult race.

“I do strongly believe that every single guy starting this race and girl, they think they can win this race.”

(Editing by Mark Heinrich)

Source: OANN

President Donald Trump, saying there is a national emergency because of tensions with Iran, is clearing the sale of billions of dollars worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia and other countries, U.S. senators said on Friday, despite strong resistance to the plan from both Republicans and Democrats.

The administration has informed congressional committees that it will go ahead with 22 arms deals worth some $8 billion, congressional aides said, sweeping aside a long-standing precedent for congressional review of such sales.

Some lawmakers and congressional aides had warned earlier this week that Trump, frustrated with Congress holding up weapons sales like a major deal to sell Raytheon Co precision-guided munitions to Saudi Arabia, was considering using a loophole in arms control law to go ahead with the sale by declaring a national emergency.

“I am disappointed, but not surprised, that the Trump Administration has failed once again to prioritize our long-term national security interests or stand up for human rights, and instead is granting favors to authoritarian countries like Saudi Arabia,” Senator Bob Menendez said in a statement.

Menendez is one of the members of Congress who reviews such sales because he is the ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Another, the Republican Foreign Relations Committee chairman, Senator Jim Risch, said he had received formal notification of the administration’s intent to move forward with “a number of arms sales.”

In a statement, Risch said, “I am reviewing and analyzing the legal justification for this action and the associated implications.”

The White House and State Department did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Source: NewsMax

The American people have every right to know if there was “political misrepresentation” occurring in the Department of Justice in the days leading to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, Rep. Greg Steube said Friday in response to President Donald Trump’s order to declassify information about the probe.

“I hope we find out soon,” the Florida Republican told Fox News’ “Outnumbered Overtime.” “If there’s documents that evidence that there were political motivations going on at the DOJ, and they were legitimately spying on the Trump campaign for political purposes and not for legitimate legal purposes, that’s going to completely change what the Democrats are talking about right now.”

Steube also said that he would think Americans would have “grave concerns” of an entity like the Federal Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court working in secret, as was the case when the DOJ obtained a warrant to surveil former Trump aide Carter Page.

“Given all the information and facts, if the information that was represented to the FISA court, if they knew this was campaign fodder or promulgated and still decided to issue a warrant, that would bring a lot of things to question,” said Steube, a member of both the House Judiciary and Oversight committees. “Those are questions that I would have.”

Meanwhile, Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler has said Mueller would like to testify privately before the committee, and Steube said that’s because Democrats have changed their tone.

Further, Steube said he’d like to see Mueller testify publicly because he encourages the public to watch all such hearings.

Source: NewsMax

Among the throng of abortion-rights demonstrators in front of the Supreme Court this week were six Democratic presidential candidates.

They were there to protest new abortion restrictions passed by Republican-dominated legislatures in such states as Georgia, Missouri and especially Alabama, which approved an outright ban on abortions.

SOUTH CAROLINA GOVERNOR PLEDGES TO SIGN ‘HEARTBEAT’ ABORTION BILL

“We are not going to allow them to move our country backward,” Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota vowed as she spoke to the crowd.

Another White House hopeful, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, called the measures “the beginning of President Trump’s war on women.”

And Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey urged those protesting to “wake up more men to join this fight.”

The demonstration on the steps of the nation’s highest court was the latest sign that the divisive issue of abortion has rocketed to the center of the race for the Democratic presidential nomination — and with a lawsuit filed Friday against the Alabama law, legal proceedings could easily keep the debate hot going into the 2020 general election.

But the question going forward — will the debate mobilize Democrats to the same degree Republicans have used the issue to energize social conservatives in the decades since the landmark Roe v. Wade high court ruling codified abortion protections? Part of President Trump’s 2016 coalition included social conservatives who, despite reservations about the candidate, wanted to ensure federal court vacancies were filled by like-minded jurists.

LA COUNTY OFFICIALS VOTE TO BAN TRAVEL TO ALABAMA OVER ABORTION LAW

And with numerous state abortion laws tempting legal challenges, an epic battle over abortion restrictions could be shaping up in the future before a Supreme Court that Trump has made more conservative since taking office.

On Friday, Missouri’s governor signed a bill banning abortions after eight weeks. Last week, Alabama passed an outright abortion ban, including for pregnancies resulting from rape or incest, unless the woman’s life is in danger. Days earlier, Georgia banned abortions absent a medical emergency after six weeks of pregnancy. The measure also made abortions illegal after a fetus’s heartbeat can be detected, which can happen before a woman even realizes she is pregnant.

“More than anything, I think what you’re seeing from both the presidential candidates and the broader Democratic elected and progressive activist universe is a visceral response to blatant attacks on women’s reproductive rights,” said veteran Democratic consultant and communications strategist Lynda Tran. “For so many women — and men — across the country, this isn’t politics as much as it is personal.”

In his 2012 re-election, then-President Barack Obama hammered GOP nominee Mitt Romney and Republicans for waging what he and other Democrats described as a “war on women.”

Four years later, Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton reiterated the theme as she spotlighted her support for Roe v. Wade — and Trump vowed to put “pro-life justices on the court.”

While the 2020 Democrats largely support abortion rights and criticize the recent state laws, they do differ when it comes to how much emphasis they put on the issue.

Gillibrand traveled to Atlanta last week to protest Georgia’s new measure and once again vowed to nominate judges who would uphold Roe v. Wade.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts produced a new policy proposal to protect access to reproductive health care.

And Sen. Kamala Harris of California has spotlighted the fight for abortion rights on the campaign trail the past couple of weeks.

But it’s not just the female candidates.

Booker earlier this week rolled out a plan that would include creating a White House Office of Reproductive Freedom.

Democratic presidential candidates Sen. Bernie Sanders, South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, and Reps. Tim Ryan of Ohio, Eric Swalwell of California, and Seth Moulton of Massachusetts also attended the rally outside the Supreme Court.

Social conservatives are banking on the legal challenges against the new state laws eventually ending up before the high court, which they hope will overturn Roe v. Wade.

FOX NEWS POLL: MAJORITY WANT ROE V. WADE TO ENDURE

But public perceptions about the 1973 ruling appear to be shifting.

A Fox News Poll in January indicated that six in 10 registered voters wanted the precedent to remain in place, while just 21 percent wanted Roe v. Wade overturned.

And 28 percent of those questioned in a Quinnipiac University survey released this week said abortion should be legal in all cases, an all-time high in that organization’s polling. Eight percent said abortion should be illegal in all cases, the lowest level since Quinnipiac first asked the question 15 years ago.

Female voters helped drive the Democrats’ success at the ballot box in 2018, as they recaptured the majority in the House. Democratic strategists say the issues will help rally the troops again in 2020.

Tran noted that “Republicans seem to be banking on these laws and this fight helping to turn out their base in 2020.”

But she spotlighted “what it will also likely do is enable Democrats who won huge victories in 2018 thanks to women voters in key districts nationally to drive up what is already heightened voter enthusiasm among progressives even higher.”

The Republican National Committee says the issue of abortion is distracting Democrats from getting the work of the people accomplished.

“While Democrats continue to espouse extreme positions on abortion,” argued RNC press secretary Blair Ellis, “they neglect the real and substantive work they promised the American people.”

A veteran GOP consultant thinks the significance of abortion’s impact on the 2020 election is overstated.

“The issue of abortion rights is a hot button issue for a small portion of either party,” said Lauren Caren, a veteran of numerous Republican presidential and Senate campaigns.

“What the middle of the road person expects is common sense. So I don’t see this issue as being the pinnacle of all issues for this election cycle,” added Carney, who served as a top adviser to Carly Fiorina’s 2016 White House bid.

Source: Fox News Politics

The vast majority of American voters say that prescription drug prices are too high, and Congress must do something to lower costs for patients, a new poll shows.

Hart Research Associates and North Star Opinion Research conducted the poll on drug pricing, and found that “more voters identify the cost of health care as a top issue Congress and the president should address… than any other issue,” and more than 8 in 10 voters “think prices charged for prescription drugs are unreasonable.”

  • 84 percent think drug prices are unreasonable.
  • 45 percent think prices are very unreasonable.
  • 75 percent “think drug manufacturers had a lot of responsibility for the high cost.”

The poll also found that the vast majority of American voters support allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices or similar policies.

  • 95 percent support “Medicare drug negotiation for drugs with no competition in the marketplace.”
  • 43 percent think that “allowing Medicare to negotiate with manufacturers to lower prices for expensive, single source drugs is a good approach.
  • 49 percent think such an approach “does not go far enough to control drug prices.”

“In our experience, the voter intensity and anger about prescription drug pricing is at a record level,” Geoff Garin, president of Hart Research Associates, and Whit Ayers, president of North Star Opinion Research, wrote in The Hill. “We believe it reflects the trends for higher deductibles and cost-sharing over time, high launch prices, price increases, reported profits of the pharmaceutical industry and years of unrealized policymaker pledges.”

Source: NewsMax

FILE PHOTO - House Judiciary Committee Chairman Nadler arrives at House Judiciary Committee oversight hearing on Special Counsel Mueller report on Capitol Hill in Washington
FILE PHOTO – House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) arrives at a House Judiciary Committee hearing titled “Oversight of the Report by Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III,” at which witness former White House Counsel Donald McGahn was subpoened to testify at on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 21, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

May 24, 2019

By Peter Szekely

NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. Representative Jerrold Nadler became woozy and appeared almost to faint during a press briefing on Friday with New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, but the congressman said soon after that he had been dehydrated and was now feeling better.

During the late morning briefing in Manhattan about the city’s planned implementation of speed traffic cameras, de Blasio stopped speaking, turned to Nadler who was slumping over in the chair next to him and offered him some water.

“You seem a little dehydrated,” the mayor said. “You OK?”

Nadler responded, “No,” but declined the mayor’s offer of water and put his hand to his head.

De Blasio later told reporters that the congressman’s condition improved markedly after receiving water, juice and treatment from emergency medical personnel.

“He got more energetic with every passing minute,” the mayor said “He was starting to talk to everyone, joke around, answer a whole bunch of medical questions.”

Nadler, 71, who has represented his New York City district in Congress since 1992, chairs the House Judiciary Committee which is currently dueling with the White House over Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

The New York Democrat underwent stomach-reduction surgery 17 years ago when he weighed 338 pounds (153 kg) and shed more than 60 pounds from his 5-foot, 4-inch (1.6-meter) frame within months, according to media reports.

Nadler himself said he had felt dehydrated, which he blamed on the warm temperature of the school building where the briefing was held, adding that his condition improved quickly.

“Appreciate everyone’s concern,” Nadler wrote on Twitter at about 1 p.m. EDT (1700 GMT). “Was very warm in the room this morning, was obviously dehydrated and felt a bit ill. Glad to receive fluids and am feeling much better.”

Asked if Nadler was taken to a hospital, spokesman Daniel Schwarz replied by email that, “He is responsive and receiving a check-up.”

(Reporting by Peter Szekely; editing by Susan Thomas and G Crosse)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Secretary of State Pompeo arrives to hold a classified briefing on Iran, with Dunford and Shanahan, for members of the House of Representatives on Capitol Hill in Washington
FILE PHOTO: U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrives to hold a classified briefing on Iran, with Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Marine Corps General Joseph Dunford and acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan, for members of the House of Representatives on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S. May 21, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst/File Photo

May 24, 2019

BERLIN/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will visit Berlin next week at the start of a trip to Europe and will hold talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel that had been scheduled earlier this month, but were called off at the last minute as tensions rose over Iran.

Pompeo will also visit Switzerland, the Netherlands and Britain on his May 30-June 5 trip, the U.S. State Department said.

A German government spokeswoman said Pompeo would meet with Merkel on May 31, and the German leader will stress that tensions with Iran over its nuclear program and role in the Middle East must be resolved peacefully.

The State Department said the talks would also involve Pompeo’s German counterpart, Heiko Maas. “The Secretary welcomes this opportunity to meet soon after his previously postponed visit to Germany,” the State Department said in a statement.

Pompeo had called off a visit to Berlin scheduled for May 7 and flew to the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, instead amid soaring tensions between the United States and Iran.

A senior German diplomat was in Tehran on Thursday for meetings with Iranian officials to try to preserve the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran that the Trump administration withdrew from last year.

Britain, France and Germany, which signed the deal along with the United States, China and Russia, are determined to show they can compensate for Washington’s withdrawal, protect trade and still dissuade Tehran from quitting the accord designed to prevent it developing a nuclear bomb.

Washington has tightened sanctions on Iran with the aim of pushing it to make concessions beyond the terms of the 2015 deal.

It also deployed a carrier strike group, bombers and Patriot missiles to the Middle East this month in response to what it called indications of possible preparations for an attack by Iran. On Friday, President Donald Trump said he would send about 1,500 U.S. troops to the Middle East, mostly as a protective measure.

The State Department said that in Switzerland Pompeo will hold talks with Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis and also meet with Swiss business leaders and the director general of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

In the Netherlands, Pompeo will attend the opening of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit with Prime Minister Mark Rutte, and he will then join Trump’s state visit to Britain, which starts on June 3.

(Reporting by Thomas Escritt and David Brunnstrom; Editing by Joseph Nasr and Leslie Adler)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: Butchers cut up chickens in a butcher shop in downtown Mexico City
FILE PHOTO: Butchers cut up chickens in a butcher shop in downtown Mexico City, Mexico, July 27, 2017. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

May 24, 2019

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – The Mexican government increased its tariff-free chicken import quota by 55,000 tons on Friday due to crimped domestic production amid avian flu outbreaks.

The announcement was made in the Mexican government’s official gazette, which cited confirmed cases of avian flu in about two-thirds of the country’s states.

While boosting overall imports, Mexico also banned chicken product imports from several U.S. counties, citing a reported outbreak of Newcastle disease.

“In order to avoid a shortage … it is advisable to keep external supply options open and expand the quota amount for imports of fresh, refrigerated and frozen chicken meat,” the economy ministry said in the official gazette.

The United States has traditionally been Mexico’s biggest foreign chicken supplier.

Under the new quota, buyers can import fresh, refrigerated or frozen chicken meat, including legs and thighs, which are especially in high demand by Mexican consumers.

(Reporting by Adriana Barrera; Editing by Tom Brown)

Source: OANN


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