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On the roster of experts: White House softens posture on Moore, quotes taxation poll – New questions on savings, uninsured rate from killing mandate – Romney Senate hopes rise as potential competitive plummets out – Another Dem joins Bill Clinton condemnation – Kumpel, wo ist mein Auto ?


Would either of the tax the recommendations in Congress be worth you voting for an alleged child predator for Senate?

That was part of the argument on offer from the White House this morning, and it ought to be something of a wakeup call for Republicans on the matters of both the Alabama Senate election and their taxation proposal.

Senior White House Adviser Kellyanne Conway was lighting into Alabama Democratic Senate nominee Doug Jones today on “Fox& Friends” as a “doctrinaire liberal” who is weak on misdemeanour and illegal immigration.

Co-host Brian Kilmeade jumped in: “So what, be voting in favour of Roy Moore ? ”

“I’m telling you that we want the voting rights in the Senate to get such a tax bill through, ” Conway said. “And if the media were really concerned about all these allegations and that’s what this was truly about … Al Franken would be on the ash heap of bygone, half-funny comedians.”

Let’s set this in some context. Last week, Conway had basically mirrored the official White House line that if true, the allegations that Moore had abused his position as a prosecutor to pursue and intimidate teenage daughters, some as young as 14, “wouldve been” disqualifying.

As Conway very succinctly and efficiently put it: “No Senate seat is worth more than a child.”

By late last week, though, Press Secretary Sarah Sanders saying that the government had turned agnostic on Moore: “The president believes that these allegations are troubling and should be taken seriously, and he thinks that the people of Alabama should attain their own decisions on who their next senator should be.”

The new ground Conway staked out today, though, was that since Franken had not yet been expelled from the Senate, the White House was free to be done in order to four periods from an askance but neutral to a position supportive of Moore- regardless of the veracity of the claims of serial, predatory misconduct by the GOP nominee.

The case against Moore is stronger and the allegations are more serious than those facing Franken so far. But with a new accuser stepping forward, this time with a contemporaneously documented accusation made during Franken’s Senate tenure, the Minnesotan’s “please analyse me” posture may be rapidly deteriorating.

But even if Franken does survive his rapid descent from 66 -year-old Democratic “fresh face” to dirty old man, is Moore worth saving?

We wrote on Friday about the power of politically weaponized claims of sex misconduct. Some Democrats were already arguing to spare Franken because Republican couldn’t be counted on to deal as harshly with their delinquents as Democrats wanted to. Now top Republican are following suit.

We talk about the moral imbecility of our epoch, but “both of us can do the wrong thing because neither of us is very likely to do the right thing” is a lulu even for the time of the Big Stupid.

But quite apart from what happens to parties that act so dissolutely and cultures that will accept it, what about the tax scheme that supposedly merits overlooking the brontosaurus-sized skeleton now tumbled from Moore’s closet? Did children become less valuable or did Senate seats become more valuable?

To be fair, Conway was simply listing the tax scheme as the first among other considerations, and didn’t even include the more ethically salient is the issue of abortion which has been raised by those, like Alabama’s governor, who say they will back Moore even if he did cruise for teens outside of abuse and neglect hearings.

No tax plan in history is merit that degree of capitulate from any White House, but specially not the lumpy porridge on offer from the House and Senate just now.

The mistaken notion among many Republicans is that they need a “win” after the ObamaCare repeal debacle and that passing tax legislation, almost irrespective of content, is a do-or-die proposal.

The legislation, which raises taxes for some in order to cut taxes for others, primarily corporations, is already unpopular. But more worrying for the GOP is that despite months of good economic news, the party and its president remain in woeful disrepair with voters.

If good economic news is supposed to help Republican comprise the House, why isn’t it working yet? What annualized GDP growth rate and market all-time-high do GOP seers believe will deliver the popularity that has so far scaped the working party in power?

It has not yet passed to enough Republicans that the people who are likely to be the most enthused about corporate taxation cuts and a sky-high Dow Jones Industrial Average- upscale, college-educated, suburbanites- are the very same voters most likely to recoil from a permissive position toward Moore.

There were two conclusions Republican could have taken from 2016 ’s narrow victory: That they won in spite of concerns about character and fitness and need to walk the straight and narrow henceforth; or that voters only don’t care anymore.

If the White House helps Moore limp into the Senate, the working party will have a great test case on those questions as each of its candidates for the upper enclosure operates manacled to the pistol packing D.A. from Etowah County.

“If obligations are too high, they mitigate the intake; the collecting is evaded; and the product to the treasury is not so great as “where theyre” held within proper and moderate bounds.”- Alexander Hamilton , Federalist No. 21

New Yorker: “Thomas Hargrove is a homicide archivist. For the past seven years, he has been accumulating municipal the recording of slayings, and he now has the largest catalogue of killings in the two countries — 751,785 slaughters carried out since 1976, which is approximately twenty-seven thousand more than appear in F.B.I. files . … Applying computer code he wrote, he searches his archive for statistical anomalies among the more ordinary slaughters resulting from lovers’ triangles, gang fights, burglaries, or brawls . … Hargrove created the code, which operates as a simple algorithm, in 2010… The algorithm forms the basis of the Murder Accountability Project (< i> map
), a nonprofit that consists of Hargrove–who is retired–a database, a Web site, and a board of nine members, who include former sleuths, murder scholars, and a forensic psychiatrist. By a process of data aggregating, the algorithm gathers murders that are related by technique, place, and period, and by the victim’s sex.”

Flag on the play-act? – Email us at HALFTIMEREPORT @FOXNEWS. COM with your tips, statements or questions.

Trump net job-approval rating: -1 9.8 points
Change from one week ago: down 0.6 degrees

[< i> President Trump’s score is determined by subtracting his average undertaking disapproval rating in < i> the five most recent, methodologically sound public polls from his average acceptance rating, calculated in the same way .]

NYT: “The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has estimated that doing away with the mandate would lead to virtually 13 million more people without insurance and federal savings of $338 billion by 2027. But polling data, analysis from a private forecasting organization and interviews with people who buy coverage through the Affordable Care Act marketplaces indicate the savings could be far less, largely because many people who qualify for the subsidies will still want to take advantage of them. Even the budget office is revising its estimates and has predicted the new numbers would be smaller. In a survey this autumn, the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation found that merely 7 percent of people who buy insurance on the individual marketplace said they would go without coverage if the mandate were no longer enforced. A majority said the mandate was not a reason they bought insurance. Merely about one in five said it was a major reason.”

Mulvaney says White House is’ OK’ drawing individual mandate repeal – Politico: “White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said Sunday that the concerned authorities wants to repeal part of Obamacare in Congress’ tax bill but is’ OK with taking it out’ if’ it becomes an impediment.’ President Donald Trump has called for Congress to include a repeal of the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandatory in its tax bill . …’ I don’t reckon anybody doubts where the White House is on repealing and replacing Obamacare. We absolutely want to do it, ’ Mulvaney told host Jake Tapper on CNN’s’ State of the Union.’”

Lamar Alexander:’ Bipartisan ObamaCare secure could be in funding bill’ – The Hill :“Sen. Lamar Alexander ( R-Tenn .) expressed optimism about a bipartisan effort to stabilize ObamaCare marketplaces, saying his bill could be included in the upcoming funding bundle if it had President Trump’s blessing.’ I think if the president assistances it, it’ll become members of the end-of-the-year package, ’ Alexander told CNBC in an
interview wrote Monday. Alexander has been pushing for his bill with Sen. Patty Murray ( D-Wash .), which would fund key ObamaCare pays for two years in exchange for added flexibility for states to change ObamaCare rules.”

Business group to target key GOP senators over taxation plan deficit spike – Axios : “Businesses for Responsible Tax Reform, a coalition of small business leaders, will launch a six-figure Tv campaign to oppose the GOP tax bill on the grounds that it balloons the federal deficit by more than$ 1 trillion. Per a source involved in international efforts: The first ads highlight promises by GOP senators James Lankford and Bob Corker to resist any programme that increases fiscal deficits. The TV ads — which you can see here and here — will run in these senators’ home nations of Tennessee( Corker) and Oklahoma( Lankford .) Polls indicate the Republican taxation schemes are unpopular — as Axios’ David Nather has reported. But progressives know they can’t rely on lackluster public opinion to sink the bill, given the extraordinary political pressure on Republicans to pass something before the end of the year.”

Darrell Issa:’ Californians don’t deserve a tax increase’ – Orange County Register : “Federal taxation reform move ahead this past week in Washington. Good news for most of the country. Not so much for us here in California . … Regrettably, I fear that the scheme as approved was likely to attain the unbelievable load our state’s taxpayers feel as bad. I voted no because my constituents don’t deserve a tax increase. While “the worlds” thinks living is easy in the ground of sand and sun, the Southern California households and small businesses I know are putting in long hours and building tough sacrifices to make every day study. Californians to stay here late, picked up second shiftings and working on in an honest great efforts to make ends meet, only to find themselves with less and less to display for it.”

Politico : “Utah Republican Boyd Matheson is waiving a 2018 Senate campaign, a decision that further opens the door for Mitt Romney to running. Matheson, a former chief of staff to Utah Sen. Mike Lee and the president of the conservative Sutherland Institute think tank, announced on Monday that he would not run for the seat currently held by longtime Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch , who is 83 and deciding whether to seek another term. The prospect of a Matheson campaign had gained traction among conservatives. During a recent trip to Washington, Matheson met with former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon and President Donald Trump’s 2016 deputy campaign administrator, David Bossie . He also received encouragement from an array of conservative outside groups. But in a video liberated Monday, Matheson said he had chosen not to operated, and that he would instead launch a new outside political group.”

Dem wave may not be enough for House in 2018 NYT: “All considered, this year’s election results and the current national political environment are consistent with the possibility of setting up a so-called wave election, like the ones that brought Democrat to power in the House in 2006 and swept Republican into agency in 1994 and 2010. But Republicans have important structural advantages. They enter the cycle with the advantage of incumbency and a highly favorable congressional map, thanks to partisan gerrymandering and the tendency for Democrat to waste polls with overwhelming margins in heavily Democratic urban centres. As a result, it’s not obvious that the building Democratic wave will be sufficient to flip control of the House. That’s not because the Democratic showing in 2017 has been any less impressive than in prior wave elections.”

Republican governors face tough map in 2010 – NYT: “For almost a decade, meetings of the Republican Governors Association were buoyant, even giddy, affairs, as the party — lifted by huge political gifts and a backlash against the Obama administration — achieved overwhelming control of state governments. But a sense of foreboding hung over the group’s gathering in Austin this past week, as President Trump’s unpopularity and Republicans’ unexpectedly drastic losses in elections earlier this month in Virginia, New Jersey and suburbs from Philadelphia to Seattle elevated the specter of a political reckon in 2018.’ I do imagine Virginia was a wake-up bellow, ’ said Gov. Bill Haslam of Tennessee, who took over here as the president of the governors association.’ There’s a pretty strong message there. When Republican lose white married ladies, that’s a strong message.’”

Bannon’s new crew – Axios: “Steve Bannon is setting up a new 501( c )( 4) — aka a’ tax-exempt social welfare organization’ — to promote his agenda, and, he argues, the president’s. Such groups don’t have to disclose their donors so long as — according to the IRS code — they can’ be operated exclusively to promote social welfare’ and so long as politics are not the group’s’ primary activity.’ Bannon first publicly mentioned his new schemes on billionaire John Catsimatidis ’ Sunday morning radio reveal,’ Cat’s Roundtable.’ … The group had not yet been epithet yet but will be put in the coming week. Bannon plans to use the group to establish a’ war council’ to promote hawkish policies against China . … For all the supposition about Bannon’s relationships with donors he’s had no fundraising apparatus to date.”

Fox News : “Not one year into the Trump administration, New Hampshire already is buzzing with the anticipation of 2020 and playing host to an early screen test for a parade of potential and declared White House hopefuls. The nation Democratic Party’s annual Kennedy-Clinton fall fundraising jamboree- held on a cold and windy November night this past Friday, in part to celebrate their 2017 success and look ahead to the midterms- featured two headliners with an eye on the next presidential race. Maryland Rep. John Delaney , who over the summer launched a stunningly early 2020 presidential campaign, told the audience that’ hyper partisan politics is tearing our country apart.’ The message from the three-term congressman was’ what we really necessity a president to do is to bring us together, to restore civility in politics and respect in public service.’ Eight-term Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio, likewise a potential challenger for the next Democratic presidential nomination, preached to the crowd that’ the Democratic Party’s got to be the party that constructs the new system.’”

Sasse warns of’ political idolatry’ in Iowa – Radio Iowa: “Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse warn of false idols, political tribalism and an addiction to’ 24/7 news cycles’ during a speech in Iowa tonight.’ Friends, “were not receiving” legislator who’s going to save America, ’ Sasse said.’ Friends, “were not receiving” election that’s going to transform your life to become so much better than it is right now and into all you want it to be.’ Sasse was the featured speaker at a fundraiser in Des Moines for The Family Leader, a Christian conservative organization. Sasse told the crowd elections can construct the country’ worse’ or’ incrementally better, ’ but Sasse indicated it was’ almost a little bit un-American’ to organize their own lives around two- and four-year election cycles.”

Daily Caller: “Democratic Rep. Jackie Speier said Sunday on ’Face the Nation’ that former President Bill Clinton ’s accusers ‘were not treated as they should have been’ and that’ they should have been believed.’ Speier was responding to CBS host John Dickerson who requested information about her stance on the debate of a reevaluation of Bill Clinton’s presidency.’ I think that the main victims who came forward were not treated as they should have been. They should have been believed because, as I have pointed out, most people who been put forward are is the truth, ’ she said.’ Let’s remember that he did face impeachment, ’ Speier said of Cinton.’ It wasn’t as if it was just tossed to the side. He faced impeachment.’ … There are other Democrats serving in congress that are in agreement with Rep. Speier. Last week, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand “re just saying that” Bill Clinton should have quitted over the Monica Lewinsky scandal.”

Florida politics in sexuality scandal tsunami –
Politico: “The Florida Democratic Party chairman vacated Friday in reproach. A Republican country senator faces possible expulsion for sexual harassment. The country Senate’s top Democratic leader abruptly stepped down after admitting an extramarital affair with a lobbyist. Even amid the flood of sexual misconduct revelations that have rocked nation capitals across the country, the nation’s biggest swaying state has lived up to its reputation for political drama and extravagance over the past month, with major implications for next year’s contested U.S. Senate and gubernatorial elections — and the next presidential race.’ Florida is on fire. And it’s not a controlled smolder, ’ said John Morgan , a major Democratic donor, godfather to the state’s medical-marijuana initiative and wildcard possible nominee for governor.”

WaPo: “Six months into a special counsel’s investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, White House aides and others in President Trump’s close orbit are increasingly subdivided in their assessments of the expanding probe and how worried administration officials and campaign aides should be about their potential legal jeopardy, according to numerous people familiar with the debate . … The investigation reached a critical turning point in recent weeks, with a formal subpoena to the campaign, an expanding listing of possibilities eyewitness and the accusations of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his deputy, Rick Gates . Some within Trump’s circle, including former joint chiefs of staff Reince Priebus , have already been interviewed by Mueller’s examiners, while others such as Hope Hicks — the White House communications administrator and trusted confidant of the president — and White House counsel Donald McGahn are expected in coming weeks.”

Special counsel mails broad record petition – ABC News: “Special Counsel Robert Mueller ’s team examine whether President Donald Trump sought to obstruct a federal inquiry into the linkages between his presidential campaign and Russian spies has now directed the Justice Department to turn over a broad-spectrum array of documents, ABC News has learned. In particular, Mueller’s investigators are keen to obtain emails relating to such firing of FBI Director James Comey and the earlier the actions of Attorney General Jeff Sessions to recuse himself from the entire topic, according to information sources who has not recognized the specific request but was told about it. Issued within the past month, the directive differentiates the special counsel’s first records request to the Justice Department, and it means Mueller is now demanding documents issued for government departments overseeing his investigation.”

Sky News: “Chancellor Angela Merkel ’s future as German Chancellor is hanging in the balance after her potential alliance collaborators, the Free Democrats( FDP ), drew out of talks to create a new government. Mrs. Merkel had been forced to seek an alliance with an unlikely group of parties after September’s elections left her without a majority. But after four weeks of negotiations, FDP leader Christian Lindner strolled out of the discussions, saying there was no’ basis of trust’ to forge a government with Mrs. Merkel’s conservative bloc and the Greens. ‘ It is better not to govern than to govern seriously, ’ he said, adding that the parties did not share’ a shared vision on modernizing’ Germany. Mrs. Merkel emerged from the talks looking weary but swore to steer Germany through the crisis. She said she would stay on as acting Chancellor and would consult with President Frank-Walter Steinmeier on how has progressed, adding that a bargain had been within reach.”

U.S. News and World :
“Trump tweeted his pique at the parent of one of three UCLA basketball players arrested in China recently for shoplifting. LaVar Ball said his son LiAngelo Ball ’s offense was minor and rejects to credit Trump with his son’s release, which the president said he was responsible for. Trump wrote Sunday on Twitter,’ Now that the three basketball players are out of China and saved from times in jail, LaVar Ball, the father of LiAngelo, is unaccepting of what I did for his son and that shoplifting is no big deal. I should have left them in jail! ’ The three musicians- LiAngelo Ball , Jalen Hill and Cody Riley – all thanked Trump when they returned to UCLA after the president, writing on Twitter, nudged them to express their gratitude. Critics faulted Trump for saying he regretted helping three American citizens being held by another government because the father-god of one wasn’t sufficiently grateful.”

Beast mode or least mode? – ESPN : “President Donald Trump took to Twitter early Monday morning to criticize Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch for standing during the Mexican national anthem but sitting during the course of its anthem for the United States prior to the Raiders’ loss to the New England Patriots at Estadio Azteca. Lynch was actually standing during the first few saloons of “The Star-Spangled Banner” on Sunday before taking a seat. And while he stood for the Mexican anthem, he was not altogether at attention.”

Trump admin tightens scrutiny of skilled worker visa applicants WSJ

White House says costs of opioid epidemic topped $500 billion in 2015 AP

So why’s Marine One in Palm Beach ?Palm Beach Post

“I never supposed I’d be quoted as looking like villains from James Bond , I guess I should take that as a compliment.”- Secretary Steven Mnuchin on “Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace” in response to criticism of photos of him and his wife posing with dollar bill

“While it may not have been in line with your tribalism topic, it is worth mentioning thatMr. Clinton was guilty of perjury in a sexual harassment trial for which he was later disbarred. ’Tribal self-identification’ I voted for Ford, Anderson, Reagan, Bush, Clinton( 1st term ), then Republican — Clinton’s enthusiastic abortion supporting persuaded me to vote almost exclusively for Republican since.”- Tom Parks , Rogers, Ark .

[< i> Ed. note: Tribalism, Mr. Parks, is a good thing, if taken in moderation. Being part of organizations larger than ourselves is good for the spirit and useful for the body. These connects help us achieve more than we can by ourselves and imbue life with particular meaning. But that’s when they’re maintained in proper proportion. Here’s C.S. Lewis in “The Four Loves”: “We may dedicate our human desires the unconditional allegiance which we owe only to God. They become gods; then they become demons. Then they will destroy us, and also destroy themselves. For natural desires that are allowed to become gods do not remain loves. They are still called so, but can become in fact complicated forms of hatred.” When it comes to politics, a good standard is to exam your willingness to apologize misconduct in one of your tribe with against your ebullience for condemning the same behaviour in the states members of a competitive gang. I have no doubt that you would not tolerate perjury in a president of your own party any more than you condoned it from a Democratic chairman. We all must daily test our assumptions in this area, though. Are we condoning too readily? Are we condemning too joyfully ?]< i>

“In many communities American small businessmen who own/ operate lawn care, lawn irrigation, landscaping, construction website cleanup, property upkeep and most every other local business that employee unskilled labor. It is quite serious in the communities I am very well known. Plainly, a legally compliant corporation cannot rival when the competitor is hiring cheap labor that is often paid under the table in money. A friend of mine was telling me that the biggest issue in his residential lawn care business are the illegals with an old truck, a flatbed car trailer and two journeying lawn mowers. He says, in recent years they are becoming greater in numbers and literally putting him out of business.”- Phillip Scott , Wilmington, N.C.

[< i> Ed. note : < i> The least discussed but probably most important part of immigration reform gets shorthanded as “internal enforcement.” What we’re truly talking about there is increasing the penalties on those who knowingly hire illegal immigrants. If the risks of hiring those here illegally outweighs the savings from cheap labor then the demand for illegal workers will slacken, thereby changing the calculus for those here illegally and those considering entering the U.S. illegally or remaining here after their visas expire. This is where prior compromises have fallen short. Many in the business community, especially in the service and agricultural sectors, rely on illegal and/ or migrant workers to pad earnings and have lobbied hard against cracking down on the employer side .]< i>

“It is a mystery to me why this is never discussed when talking about taxes. It is my contention that government cannot taxation a business or more importantly a corporation simply because they simply hold taxes and the compliance with those statutes as a cost of doing business. Those expenditures are folded into the price of whatever goods or services being provided. As a repercussion we the consumer of whatever product they produce end up paying those taxes in the form of higher costs for those working products. I think this is a gross disservice to the US tax payers in that they largely don’t recognize these taxes levied against businesses and firms as being paid indirectly by themselves. What say you? ”- Will Gibbs , Mossyrock, Wash.

[< i> Ed. note : < i> Quite so, Mr. Gibbs! One of the advantages or disadvantages( depending on where you stand) of the so-called value-added tax or other taxes on consumption is that the government’s share of the price of goods is not immediately evident to the citizens. If you want to raises taxes on income, as Republicans are currently attempting, voters will howl. Adding a half-of a percent to price of Tootsie Pops or pinochle specifies is much easier to do. Thusly, a frog are able to obtain more easily simmered in a VAT …]< i>

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Irish Times : “This week, an older German boy was re-united with his vehicle twenty years after he forgot where he parked. He reported his auto missing to the police in Frankfurt in 1997 and metropoli authorities have just discovered it. The auto was not stolen, but in fact parked in a garage in an old industrial building. The car was detected because the building must therefore be demolished. The police set out to find the owner of private vehicles as it was in the way.When the 76 -year-old owner was find, he was driven by police and accompanied by his daughter to be reunited with the car, according to German regional paper Augsberger Allgemein . The vehicle was in disrepair, and could not be driven home.”

Chris Stirewalt is the politics editor for Fox News. Brianna McClelland contributed to this report. Want FOX News Halftime Report in your inbox every day? Sign up here .

Chris Stirewalt joined Fox News Channel( FNC) in July of 2010 and serves as politics editor are stationed in Washington , D.C.

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