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NEWS   TUESDAY, OCTOBER  17, 2017   NEWS

Trump, McConnell Pledge Unity On Tax Reform, Health Care After Feud
President Trump exited a White House meeting Monday with Sen. Mitch McConnell saying his relationship with the Senate majority leader is “better than ever” and they are working together on major legislative priorities including tax and health care reform. “We’ve been friends for a long time,” Trump said at a Rose Garden press conference following his meeting with McConnell, with whom he had a public falling out this summer. “We’re fighting for big tax cuts. ... My relationship with this gentleman has been outstanding.” Fox
VOA VIEW: Democrats and liberals are not happy.

Trump Should Remind McConnell Which Platform Won The Election
Ann Coulter said President Donald Trump should put more pressure on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to pass legislation. "The good thing about Mitch McConnell is he isn't dumb. He knows how to get stuff done," the conservative commentator and author said on Fox Business Network on Monday. Coulter said the president should point out to McConnell that the old Republican platform did not win the presidency in 2016. He should also flatter McConnell by pointing out his achievements, such as getting all GOP senators to vote 'no' on ObamaCare, she said. Fox

Top Dem After Trip To South Korea: Ally Is Confused, Shaken By Trump Rhetoric
The top Democrat on the Senate Armed Services Committee said Monday that South Koreans are “confused” and “a little bit shaken” by President Trump’s rhetoric on North Korea. Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.) was speaking to reporters in Washington after returning from a trip last week to South Korea and the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea. Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un have engaged in a heated war of words in recent months as Pyongyang progresses its nuclear and missile programs. The Hill
VOA VIEW: Liberals don't like the truth.

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Trump Promises To ‘Look Into’ Report On Drug Czar Nominee Marino In Wake Of Post/‘60 Minutes’ Probe
President Trump said “we’re going to be looking into” a report about Rep. Tom Marino (R-Pa.), his drug czar nominee, in the wake of the Washington Post/“60 Minutes” investigation that found the lawmaker helped steer legislation that made it harder for the government to take some enforcement actions against giant drug companies. The president’s comments came as congressional Democrats reacted sharply to the report that Marino helped guide the legislation that sailed through Congress last year with virtually no opposition. Washington Post

Every Excuse Hillary Clinton Has Given For Her 2016 Election Loss
Hillary Clinton has blamed her election loss to Donald Trump on pretty much everyone and everything, most recently telling CNN's Fareed Zakaria that sexism kept her from shattering America's ultimate glass ceiling. It's the latest attempt by the former secretary of state and two-time presidential loser to recast her 2016 loss. So we decided to compile all the reasons Clinton has given for why Trump is sitting in the Oval Office instead of her. Newsweek
VOA VIEW: Hillary needs a reality check - go away.

Hillary Blames Assange
In an exclusive interview with Four Corners, Mrs Clinton alleged Mr Assange colluded with a Russian intelligence operation to disrupt the 2016 US election and damage her candidacy for president. "Assange has become a kind of nihilistic opportunist who does the bidding of a dictator," she said. "WikiLeaks is unfortunately now practically a fully owned subsidiary of Russian intelligence." The Wikileaks founder, who has been living inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012, hit back this morning, tweeting that Mrs Clinton was "not a credible person".  ABC News

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Obama Aides Lash Out After Trump Claims Past Presidents Didn't Call Fallen Soldiers' Families
President Donald Trump on Monday accused Barack Obama and other past American presidents of failing to call the family members of slain service members, a claim a former Obama aide called “an outrageous and disrespectful lie.” Four Green Berets were killed earlier this month in an ambush in Niger. But Trump has stayed publicly silent on the issue until Monday, when he was asked during a Rose Garden news conference why the American people hadn’t heard the president speak about the deaths related to the Oct. 4 attack. POLITICO

European Union Ministers Approve New Sanctions On North Korea
The European Union imposed fresh sanctions on North Korea on Monday as part of international efforts to punish the pariah regime for its nuclear and ballistic weapons programmes. Foreign ministers meeting in Luxembourg signed off a new package of measures including a ban on investments in North Korea and on EU exports of oil to Pyongyang. They also tightened the restrictions on North Korean workers in the EU to try to stop money being sent home that could be used to fund the disputed weapons programmes. Google News

Bowe Bergdahl Pleads Guilty To Desertion, Faces Up To Life In Prison
US Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl could spend the rest of his life behind bars after he pleaded guilty Monday to desertion and misbehavior before the enemy. Bergdahl disappeared from his base in Afghanistan in June 2009 and was held in captivity by the Taliban until May 2014. "I left my observation post on my own," Bergdahl told a judge Monday. "I understand leaving was against the law." The 31-year-old said he deserted from his outpost to try to reach the base from where he was dispatched. Bergdahl told the judge he wanted to report "a critical problem in my chain of command," but did not specify what that problem was. CNN
VOA VIEW: Bergdahl should get life with Obama.

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Trump Critics Should Be Wary Of A President Pence
As critics continue to call for the resignation or impeachment of President Donald Trump, a new piece from The New Yorker discusses what it considers the dangers of Vice President Mike Pence taking the reins if the critics were to actually get their way. In it, Pence’s anti-LGBTQ stance is highlighted, as well as a joke made by Trump to a legal scholar that the scholar shouldn’t ask Pence about gay rights because Pence wants to “hang them all.” But the piece also talks about how Trump often mocks Pence’s religious beliefs, and recounts stories of anti-Catholic prejudice that Pence faced as a child. Indy Star
VOA VIEW: : Liberal progaganda grows.

Women On Public Payroll Can Press Equal Pay Claims, New California Law Says
California women who work for the government gained new protections against wage discrimination under a bill Gov. Jerry Brown signed on Saturday. The law, Assembly Bill 46, allows female public employees to pursue wage discrimination claims in court or through the state’s Division of Labor Standards Enforcement. Previously, only private-sector employees were allowed to press those claims under the California Equal Pay Act. Assemblyman Jim Cooper, D-Elk Grove, submitted the bill after The Sacramento Bee in 2015 reported that female employees in the Legislature earned 92 cents on the dollar compared to men. The state Senate in February gave raises to 71 employees to address wage disparities there. Sacramento Bee

Trump Refuses To Blame Himself For GOP ‘Not Getting The Job Done’
President Donald Trump on Monday refused to take any blame for legislative failures and fingered Republican senators for “not getting the job done.” “Despite what the press writes, I have great relationships with, actually, many senators, but, in particular, with most Republican senators,” Trump told reporters during a meeting with his Cabinet. “But we’re not getting the job done. And I’m not going to blame myself. I’ll be honest, they are not getting the job done.” Huffington Post
VOA VIEW: Republican cowardice is the blame for inaction.

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Hillary Clinton Compares Donald Trump With Harvey Weinstein
Hillary Clinton drew parallels between Harvey Weinstein and President Donald Trump, calling the disgraced Hollywood mogul’s behavior “disgusting” and “heartbreaking” ? just like the person once caught on camera bragging about sexually assaulting women. In an interview Sunday with Britain’s “The Andrew Marr Show,” the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee commended women who have stepped forward to share stories of their encounters with Weinstein and emphasized that this type of lecherous behavior can’t be tolerated in any industry, including politics. Huffington Post
VOA VIEW: What about Hillary's husband?

Trump Mocks Pence For Wanting ‘To Hang’ All Gay People
President Trump routinely mocks Vice President Pence’s staunch Christian faith and once joked that there was no point in asking him about gay rights because “he wants to hang them all,” The New Yorker reported. In a wide-ranging profile of Pence, the magazine pointed out that Trump likes to make sure his vice president is always aware of “who’s boss.” During a discussion about gay rights, Trump motioned to Pence and said: “Don’t ask that guy – he wants to hang them all!” NY Post
VOA VIEW: The liberal media like to stir the pot so they can divide Trump and Pence.

Trump Attacks Democrats As Tax Reform Obstructionists
President Trump in tweets Monday labeled Democrat lawmakers as obstructionists and invoked the name of a Reagan-era economist to tout his tax reform plan. “Art Laffer just said that he doesn’t know how a Democrat could vote against the big tax cut/reform bill and live with themselves! @FoxNews,” Trump posted on Twitter.” The Democrats only want to increase taxes and obstruct. That’s all they are good at!” Laffer was an economist who gained prominence during the Reagan administration for promoting his theory that lower taxes spur economic growth. NY Post

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Louisville Fires Rick Pitino Amid NCAA Bribery Probe
The University of Louisville fired legendary basketball coach Rick Pitino on Monday, nearly three weeks after the school was implicated in a national bribery scandal. "We simply felt this was in the best interest of the university," Greg Postel, the college's interim president, said after the unanimous vote by the athletic association board, which capped six hours of closed-door meetings. Pitino, who had been head men's coach since 2001 and led the team to a national championship in 2013, fought to stop the school from terminating his contract, which still has $44 million left on it. NBC News

Trump Says He Understands Bannon’s War On GOP Establishment
President Donald Trump said Monday he can understand why his "friend" and former chief White House strategist Steve Bannon has declared war on the Republican establishment. "I can understand where Steve Bannon is coming from," Trump said during remarks before a Cabinet meeting. But later, in an impromptu question-and-answer session with reporters, Trump stood with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and seemed to temper his comments. Trump and McConnell, a frequent focus of Bannon's anti-establishment ire, took turns touting their "outstanding" relationship while emphasizing shared goals, like tax reform and appointing conservative judges.  NBC News

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Iraqi Forces Seize Oil City Kirkuk From Kurds In Bold Advance
Iraqi government forces captured the major Kurdish-held oil city of Kirkuk on Monday, responding to a Kurdish referendum on independence with a bold lightning strike that transforms the balance of power in the country. A convoy of armored vehicles from Iraq’s elite U.S.-trained Counter-Terrorism Force seized Kirkuk’s provincial government headquarters on Monday afternoon, less than a day after the operation began, a Reuters reporter in Kirkuk said. Reuters

U.S. Judge Questions Challengers Of Trump's Latest Travel Ban
A U.S. judge lobbed tough questions at attorneys representing refugee groups and immigrant advocates seeking to overturn the Trump administration’s latest policy banning citizens of some countries from entering the United States. U.S. District Court Judge Theodore Chuang in Maryland on Monday heard arguments for and against President Donald Trump’s new travel ban, announced on Sept. 24 that is set to take effect on Wednesday. It indefinitely limits travel from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad and North Korea. Certain government officials from Venezuela were also barred. Reuters

Efforts To Pry Loose Trump Tax Returns Hit A Wall
Efforts to pry loose President Donald Trump’s tax returns at the state level have hit a wall, stalling in statehouses across the country including in California, a hotbed of anti-Trump resistance. Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed legislation late Sunday that would have forced presidential candidates to make their tax returns public before appearing on the California ballot, marking the death there of a measure once ballyhooed by Democrats and open government advocates as an end-run to Trump’s refusal to disclose his tax filings. POLITICO

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