Welcome to Liberty Nation’s Daily Snapshot. All the top news of the day, the latest polls, and more.
What’s happening in the political sphere – the hot stories making the news today.
- House Democrats intend to call Attorney General Bill Barr to testify about the DOJ decision to abandon the case against former national security advisor Michael Flynn. Barr is standing his ground, however, and asserts that whatever Flynn may or may not have told FBI agents during a Jan 2017 interview, there was no crime. “The Department of Justice is not persuaded that this was material to any legitimate counterintelligence investigation,” Barr told CBS News. “So it was not a crime.”
- One of the footnotes to Michael Horowitz’s report on abuse of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act – a footnote only recently declassified – reveals that at least one piece of information passed to former British spy Christopher Steele came from a man with “connections to Russian Intelligence Services (RIS).” That information found its way into Steele’s infamous “dossier” and was subsequently included in an FBI affidavit submitted to a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. Russian collusion after all, then?
- Tara Reade told her ex-husband about “a problem she was having at work regarding sexual harassment in U.S. Senator Joe Biden’s office,” according to a 1996 court document recently obtained by the San Luis Obispo Tribune. It’s beginning to appear that Reade described her alleged sexual assault at the hands of Joe Biden to just about anyone who would listen. Why she would do such a thing if the incident never occurred is a head-scratcher, to say the least. It is going to become increasingly difficult for the former vice president and his supporters to dismiss Reade’s claim.
The latest polls and trends impacting the United States.
- Six in ten voters approve of Hillary Clinton’s endorsement of Joe Biden for president. Approval was highest among Democrats, not surprisingly. What is surprising, though, is that someone thought such a poll was necessary, interesting, or relevant. Perhaps this is what happens when pollsters are quarantined for too long.
- Has the media overstated the danger posed by the COVID-19 outbreak? 50% of Republican voters say yes, according to a recent Hill-HarrisX poll. 31% of Independents and 17% of Democrats agree. A quarter of Democrats and Republicans – and 28% of Independents – believe the media has understated the threat.
- Will climate change damage the U.S. economy if not addressed? Just 38% of American adults say it will. 19% of Americans say it would cost more money to “solve” climate change than it would to fix the problems climate change will cause.
Something political to ponder as you enjoy your morning coffee.
The spark that may have ignited the fire of Trump-Russia conspiracy theory was the conclusion, reached by the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC), that the Russians had in 2016 hacked a Democratic National Committee server. The IC never knew this for a fact, though, despite what the media has reported. The theory of Russian hacking came from CrowdStrike, a network security company hired by the DNC to investigate the hack. A recently released interview transcript reveals that, in fact, the head of CrowdStrike was not able to say for sure that the Russians had hacked the server. The DNC did not turn over the allegedly hacked server to the FBI. It is not unreasonable to begin to consider alternative scenarios: that, perhaps, the server was hacked by a person or persons other than the Russians – or that maybe the server was not hacked at all. Was the claim of hacking a deliberate planting of the seed that nourished the Russian collusion story? This is only a theory, of course, but – at this point – it is a theory based upon a huge, steaming pile of fairly compelling circumstantial evidence.
A thought for the day from history’s most interesting thinkers.
Only government can take perfectly good paper, cover it with perfectly good ink and make the combination worthless.
– Milton Friedman
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