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Florida Election Recount Underway, Tensions Rise

The Stream - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 14:14

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- The first election workers have begun the enormous task of recounting ballots in Florida’s bitterly close races for the U.S. Senate and governor, ramping up their efforts after the secretary of state ordered a review of the two nationally watched contests.

Miami-Dade County election officials began feeding ballots into scanning machines Saturday evening. The tedious work in that one South Florida county alone could take days, considering some 800,000 ballots were cast. Multiply that by 67 counties in the nation’s third most populous state, and the scope of the task was beginning to sink in Sunday.

The Florida secretary of state ordered the recounts Saturday, an unprecedented step for the two flagship races in a state that took five weeks to decide the 2000 presidential election. Secretary of State Ken Detzner’s office said it was unaware of any other time either a race for governor or U.S. Senate in Florida required a recount, let alone both in the same election.

Florida’s 67 counties can decide when to begin their recounts, but must complete them by Thursday. Elections officials in two large counties in the Tampa Bay area -- Pinellas and Hillsborough -- said they would begin recounts Sunday morning.

Unofficial results show that Republican former U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis led Democratic Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum by less than 0.5 percentage points, which will require a machine recount of ballots. In the Senate race, Republican Gov. Rick Scott’s lead over Democratic incumbent Bill Nelson is less than 0.25 percentage points, requiring a hand recount of ballots from tabulation machines that couldn’t determine which candidate got the vote.

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The recount opens against a backdrop of political tensions. President Donald Trump on Saturday tweeted his belief that the elections were being stolen. Angry protesters gathered at an elections office in Broward County on Saturday, waving signs and shouting with bullhorns.

Following the announcement of a recount, Gillum withdrew his concession in the governor’s race.

“Let me say clearly, I am replacing my words of concession with an uncompromised and unapologetic call that we count every single vote,” he said, adding that he would accept whatever outcome emerges.

In a video statement released Saturday, DeSantis said the election results were “clear and unambiguous” and that he was preparing to become the state’s next governor. He also thanked the state’s supervisors of elections, canvassing boards, and the staffs for “working hard to ensure that all lawful votes are counted.”

“It is important that everyone involved in the election process strictly adhere to the rule of law which is the foundation for our nation,” he said.

In the Senate recount, Scott implored the state’s sheriffs to “watch for any violations and take appropriate action” during the recount.

Scott and his supporters, including Trump, have alleged that voter fraud is underway in Democratic-leaning Broward County, where the Republican lead has narrowed since Election Day. There’s no proof of voter fraud and the state’s election division, which Scott runs, said Saturday that its observers in Broward had seen “no evidence of criminal activity.”

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement said Friday it has not launched any investigation into election fraud.

The scene recalled the 2000 presidential recount, when it took more than five weeks for Florida to declare George W. Bush the victor over Vice President Al Gore by 537 votes, and thus giving Bush the presidency.

Florida was mocked for the way it handled the infamous 2000 recount, especially since there was no uniform process then on how to proceed. That has changed, with the Legislature passing a clear procedure on how a recount should be conducted.

Florida is also conducting a recount in a third statewide race. Democrat Nikki Fried had a 0.07 percentage point lead lead over Republican state Rep. Matt Caldwell in the race for agriculture commissioner, one of Florida’s three Cabinet seats.

___

AP writer Kelli Kennedy in Fort Lauderdale and Tamara Lush in St. Petersburg contributed to this report.

 

Copyright 2018 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Trump Awards Presidential Medal of Freedom to Roger Staubach, Others

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 14:11
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump has announced his first recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom and they include the wife of a major Republican Party donor, the longest-serving Republican senator in U.S. history, Elvis Presley and Babe Ruth.

Catalan Separatists Clash with Police in Barcelona

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 14:00
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) - Police in Barcelona have briefly clashed with Catalan separatists who are protesting a rally by Spain's national police forces in the Mediterranean city.

French President Emmanuel Macron: 'Nationalism is Treason'

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 13:42
Macron spoke in front of world leaders including President Donald Trump, Russian President Vladimir Putin, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

N. California Fire Officials Begin Agonizing Search for the Dead

The Stream - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 13:26

PARADISE, Cal. (AP) -- Sheriff’s investigators have begun the agonizing task of scouring through the wreckage of California’s most destructive fire on record in search of the dead. By Saturday, the death toll had reached 23, but it seemed likely to climb.

With the entire town of Paradise wiped out and the fire still raging furiously in surrounding communities, Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea said the county was bringing in a fifth search and recovery team. An anthropology team from California State University, Chico was also assisting, because in some cases “the only remains we are able to find are bones or bone fragments.”

“This weighs heavy on all of us,” Honea said. “Myself and especially those staff members who are out there doing what is important work but certainly difficult work.”

The victims have not been identified, but the department has a roster of 110 people believed missing. Officials hope many of the elderly on the list simply are elsewhere without cellphones or away to contact loved ones. Honea said the agency was also bringing in a mobile DNA lab and encouraged people with missing relatives to submit samples to aid in the identification process.

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The death toll made the Camp Fire the third-deadliest on record in the state, another statistic for a blaze now logged at 164 square miles (425 square kilometers) that has cost at least $8.1 million to fight so far, said Steve Kaufmann, a spokesman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

Entire neighborhoods were leveled, destroying more than 6,700 buildings, almost all of them homes, and the business district was destroyed by a blaze that threatened to explode again with the same fury that largely incinerated the foothill town.

More firefighters headed to the area Saturday, with wind gusts of up to 50 miles per hour expected through Monday, raising the risk of conditions similar to those when the fire started Thursday, said Alex Hoon with the National Weather Service.

Two people were also found dead in a wildfire in Southern California, bringing the total number of fatalities statewide to 25 as the fires tore through Malibu mansions and working-class suburban homes. State officials put the total number of people forced from their homes statewide at more than 200,000. Evacuations included the city of Malibu, home to some of Hollywood’s biggest stars.

Back in Paradise, the air still clogged with smoke, residents who stayed behind to try to save their property or who managed to get back to their neighborhoods found cars incinerated and homes reduced to rubble.

People sidestepped metal that melted off cars and Jet-Skis and donned masks as they surveyed ravaged neighborhoods despite an evacuation order for all of Paradise, a town of 27,000 founded in the 1800s. Some cried when they saw nothing was left.

Jan MacGregor, 81, got back to his small two-bedroom home in Paradise with the help of his firefighter grandson. He found his home leveled -- a large metal safe and pipe work from his septic system the only recognizable traces. The safe was punctured with bullet holes from guns inside that went off in the scorching heat.

He has lived in Paradise for nearly 80 years, moving there in 1939 when he said the town had just 3,000 people and was nicknamed Poverty Ridge. The fire was not a complete surprise, he said.

“We knew Paradise was a prime target for forest fire over the years,” he said. “We’ve had ’em come right up to the city limits -- oh yeah -- but nothing like this,” he said.

MacGregor said he probably would not rebuild: “I have nothing here to go back to.”

Homes and other buildings in Paradise were still burning, and fire crews were trying to extinguish those blazes, said Scott McLean, a captain with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. Officials warned firefighters to wear their helmets and be careful of falling trees.

Drought, warmer weather attributed to climate change and home construction deeper into forests have led to more destructive wildfire seasons that have been starting earlier and lasting longer.

California emerged from a five-year drought last year but has had a very dry 2018. Much of the northern two-thirds of the state, including where the fire is burning, is abnormally dry, according to a U.S. government analysis.

Elinor “Jeannie” Williams, 86, was not among the nine victims of the blaze but died as she waited to be airlifted from an evacuated hospital where she was being treated for a head injury.

She was dying, and the family expected to lose her in a few days, said her stepdaughter, Lisa. Still, her death has been hard on her 84-year-old father, Robert, who also may have lost his home, she said.

“He’s lost, he’s confused, he’s trying to hang in there,” she said. “It’s hitting him hard. Everything is gone, including his wife.”

___

Associated Press writers Daisy Nguyen, Olga R. Rodriguez and Sudhin Thanawala in San Francisco contributed to this report. Darlene Superville contributed from Paris.

 

Copyright 2018 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Poland Celebrates 100 Year Anniversary of Country's Rebirth as an Independent State

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 12:59
WARSAW, Poland (AP) - Poland is celebrating the 100th anniversary of its rebirth as an independent state on Sunday with a multitude of events across the country, including marches, Masses, and the national hymn being sung in more than 600 public places.

RNC Points Out 12 Times Florida’s Broward County Elections Supervisor Has Been ‘Incompetent and Possibly Criminal’

The Stream - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 12:00

As both parties scrutinize the vote count in Florida's Broward County, with the state's gubernatorial and senatorial races closing in on a tie, Sen. Marco Rubio said the county's elections office has a history of malfeasance.

"This is at a minimum a pattern of incompetence. Voters deserve better," the Florida Republican said Thursday on Tucker Carlson Tonight. "This is not even a partisan thing. This is a county that apparently cannot even count votes as well as a county that just got wiped out by a hurricane."

The state's Republican Gov. Rick Scott filed a lawsuit Thursday against Broward election supervisor Brenda Snipes for allegedly refusing to tell them about votes she has not yet counted.

The vote totals Snipes tabulated two days after the election would have readers believe that more people cast votes for agricultural commissioner than for U.S. Senator.

OMG. Looking at county-level undervote. Broward stands out for having 3.7% of its ballots left blank for #FLSEN but cast for #FLGOV. No other county comes close, and Palm/Dade had more votes for Senator. Either this is ballot design or machine error. #flapol #sayfie pic.twitter.com/OtyK0oO20g

— Matthew Isbell (@mcimaps) November 8, 2018

Additionally, lawyer Marc Elias of Perkins Coie -- who hired Fusion GPS for the Democratic National Committee to investigate Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential election -- has been hired to litigate a recount on behalf of Democrats. 

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The Republican National Committee also pointed out 12 times news stories using its own headlines where Snipes has "been outright incompetent and possibly criminal":

Illegally destroying ballots (Sun Sentinel, May 14, 2018) Absentee ballots that never arrived (Miami Herald, November 6, 2018) Fellow Democrats accused her precinct of individual and systemic breakdowns that made it difficult for voters to cast regular ballots (Miami Herald, November 4, 2014) Posted election results half an hour before polls closed - a very clear violation of election law. (Miami Herald, November 2, 2018) Sued for leaving amendments off of ballots (Miami Herald, October 20, 2016) Claiming to not have the money to notify voters when their absentee ballot expired (Sun Sentinel, November 8, 2018) Having official staffers campaign on official time (Broward Beat, July 20, 2016) Problems printing mail ballots (Miami Herald, November 2, 2018) Accusations of ballot stuffing (Heritage, August 1, 2017) Voters receiving ballots with duplicate pages (Miami Herald, November 2, 2018) Slow results and piles of ballots that cropped up way after Election Day (The Capitolist, November 8, 2018) Opening ballots in private, breaking Florida law (Politico, August 13, 2018)

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World Leaders Late for Armistice Centenary after Feminist Protesters Disrupt Trump Motorcade

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 11:34
PARIS (AP) — The feminist activist group Femen has claimed responsibility for topless protesters who disrupted U.S. President Donald Trump’s motorcade on its way to a ceremony commemorating the end of World War I.

First World War Centenary: Excerpts from Letters Written on Armistice Day, 1918

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 10:57
PARIS (AP) - A hundred years later, their words can still pierce hearts. Fighters writing home from opposing front lines of World War I, a Chinese labourer marvelling at the war's end, a woman dreaming of reuniting with her soldier love.

England's New Top Prosecutor Criticised for Adopting Islamist Talking Points

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 10:28
England's new chief prosecutor, Max Hill QC, has been criticised for appearing to adopt Islamist talking points.

Four Months After Trump's Warning over Russian Gas Dependence, German Lawmakers Urge Merkel to Act

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 10:20
A group of German lawmakers have accused Angela Merkel of working to place Germany under Russian influence as she pushes on with a gas pipeline that would see central Europe directly connected to Russia for energy -- just months after U.S. President Donald Trump warned against the potential consequences of the project.

Walking in God’s Wisdom: Psalm 25:18

The Stream - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 10:00

“Consider my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sins.” - Psalm 25:18

It is well for us when prayers about our sorrows are linked with pleas concerning our sins--when, being under God's hand, we are not wholly taken up with our pain, but remember our offences against God. It is well, also, to take both sorrow and sin to the same place.

It was to God that David carried his sorrow: it was to God that David confessed his sin. Observe, then, we must take our sorrows to God. Even your little sorrows you may roll upon God, for he counteth the hairs of your head; and your great sorrows you may commit to him, for he holdeth the ocean in the hollow of his hand. Go to him, whatever your present trouble may be, and you shall find him able and willing to relieve you. But we must take our sins to God too. We must carry them to the cross, that the blood may fall upon them, to purge away their guilt, and to destroy their defiling power.

The special lesson of the text is this: -- that we are to go to the Lord with sorrows and with sins in the right spirit. Note that all David asks concerning his sorrow is, "Look upon mine affliction and my pain;" but the next petition is vastly more express, definite, decided, plain-- "Forgive all my sins."

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Many sufferers would have put it, "Remove my affliction and my pain, and look at my sins." But David does not say so; he cries, "Lord, as for my affliction and my pain, I will not dictate to thy wisdom. Lord, look at them, I will leave them to thee, I should be glad to have my pain removed, but do as thou wilt; but as for my sins, Lord, I know what I want with them; I must have them forgiven; I cannot endure to lie under their curse for a moment."

A Christian counts sorrow lighter in the scale than sin; he can bear that his troubles should continue, but he cannot support the burden of his transgressions.

Charles Spurgeon

English Baptist preacher Charles Spurgeon (1834 – 1892)

 

 

Exclusive--Patrick K. O’Donnell: Veterans Day and America’s Unknown Soldier

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 10:00
This week, small towns and big cities all across the country will hold parades and other celebrations in honor of their veterans. One of the most poignant and meaningful of these ceremonies will take place at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery.

Military Photo of the Day: Birthday Celebration

The Stream - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 08:00

24th Marine Amphibious Unit Birthday Celebration, Beirut, Lebanon, 1983.

“Col. T.J. Geraghty, CO of 24th MAU gives comments during the birthday celebration at 24 MAU Headquarters, Beirut, Lebanon, 10 November 1983”.

From the Photograph Collection (COLL/3948), Marine Corps Archives & Special Collections

GOP Rep.-Elect Dan Crenshaw Makes Appearance on SNL for Pete Davidson Apology

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 06:08
On this weekend’s “Saturday Night Live” during the “Weekend Update” segment, Rep.-elect Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) appeared one week after being described as a “hitman in a porno movie” by cast member Pete Davidson during the same segment. After last week’s episode aired, Davidson took a lot of criticism for his jab at Crenshaw, a former lieutenant commander in the U.S. Navy who lost his eye in active service and won his bid as a Republican candidate to represent Texas’s 2nd Congressional District. “In what I’m sure was a huge shock for people who know me, I made a poor choice last week,” Davidson said. “I made a joke about Lieutenant Commander Dan Crenshaw, and on behalf of the show and myself, I apologize.” After taking a few obligatory jabs at Davidson, Crenshaw used his appearance to make a plea for remembrance of those that served and died as the Veterans Day holiday approaches. “There’s a lot of lessons to learn here,” he said. “Not just that the left and the right can still agree on some things, but also this: Americans can forgive one another. We can remember what brings us together as a country and still see the good in each

Watch: McKinnon's Jeff Sessions Leaves AG's Office in SNL Cold Open

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 05:44
On this weekend’s broadcast of NBC’s “Saturday Night Live,” show cast member Kate McKinnon got at least one more chance to showcase her Jeff Sessions impersonation. Sessions resigned from the attorney general post of the Trump administration’s Department of Justice earlier this week. McKinnon’s Sessions was forced to relinquish his White House badge to Aidy Bryant’s Sarah Sanders, the White House press secretary. Also making appearances in the cold open were Beck Bennett’s Vice President Mike Pence, Alex Moffat’s Eric Trump, Mike Day’s Donald Trump Jr. and Robert De Niro’s Robert Mueller. Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor

Report: Country Club Bars Man After Calling Tucker Carlson's Daughter a 'C*nt,' 'Whore'

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 04:50
A Virginia country club revoked the membership of a man accused of verbally accosting Tucker Carlson's teenage daughter last month, according to the Fox News Channel host. Conversely, the man referred to as Juan alleges Carlson assaulted him and is purportedly being represented by television lawyer Michael Avenatti.

Pirro Hammers Broward County's Brenda Snipes for 'Insidious' Election Fraud

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 04:43
Saturday on Fox News Channel’s “Justice,” host Jeanine Pirro slammed Broward County, FL Elections Supervisor Brenda Snipes for her handling of last Tuesday’s election. Snipes’ Broward County is at the center of a recount controversy that has decisions on three statewide elections in Florida on hold: U.S. Senate and Florida governor and agriculture commissioner. Pirro pointed out discrepancies in Snipes’ count, which included questionable ballots and missed deadlines, which she deemed to be fraud. “Let me tell you what a mess we are in,” Pirro said. “There are reportedly thousands of newfound ballots. Each one is five pages long. Do you think a woman who doesn’t tally or canvass along the way, who loses thousands of ballots, who doesn’t want to turn them in in 30 minutes after the polls are closed like 3,139 other counties do should be trusted? Do you think should be allowed to view five times, because that’s how long the ballots are, five pages of thousands and thousands of missing ballots?” “Folks, this is lunacy,” she continued. “Voter fraud is insidious. It causes people to think their vote doesn’t matter. But it’s worse than that, folks. There are reportedly transcripts now that prove that when the Democrats say they want

Watch—Reporter Comes Face to Face with Terrifying 'Firenado' in Malibu

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 04:32
Karen Foshay, a KCET-TV journalist reporting on the Woosley Fire blazing through parts of Southern California, came face to face Friday evening with a "firenado," calling the encounter among the most "terrifying" events she has ever experienced.

Watch: Joy Reid Suggests Racism Behind Republican Criticism of Brenda Snipes

Breitbart News - Sun, 11/11/2018 - 04:17
MSNBC host Joy Reid suggested Saturday that the outpouring of Republican criticism of Broward County Board of Elections supervisor Brenda Snipes is driven by racism.

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