USDA’s newly proposed rules for SNAP will cut food stamp benefits for hundreds of thousands of hungry people. We demand that you stop these proposed changes before they take effect on April 1, 2020.
According to Feeding America, “SNAP provides families with their basic nutritional needs to get them through temporary hard times. It helps people get back on their feet and on the road to a better life.”
But the Trump administration has been working for the last three years to undermine SNAP as part of their agenda to limit access to public assistance programs.
This newly announced attack on SNAP is especially outrageous, because Congress rejected these proposed changes to the program during the Farm Bill debate last year. The House rejected them in a bipartisan vote of 330-83, and the Senate voted down a similar amendment 68-30.
But now, Sonny Perdue, Trump’s secretary of agriculture, is moving forward with these changes through an undemocratic “executive order” that targets very poor people struggling to work—many of whom are homeless, living in small towns and rural communities with little or no access to employment, or have health conditions that prevent them from working.
The accuser, identified as “Jane Doe 15”, did not accuse Prince Andrew of any wrongdoing but called on him and others to come forward and give a statement under oath.
Elsewhere, former home secretary Jacqui Smith alleged that Prince Andrew made racist comments to her during a state dinner.
“I have to say the conversation left us slack-jawed with the things that he felt it was appropriate to say,” she told the LBC election podcast.
And Rohan Silva, who was an adviser to former prime minister David Cameron, also accused the prince of using a racial slur in his presence.
A Buckingham Palace spokesman strenuously denied the claims, adding that Prince Andrew “does not tolerate racism in any form”.
There is no wholesale repudiation of Prince Andrew’s public role.
But whether as a result of the interview he gave, or because of the continuing swirl of allegations, there is a falling away of support for the prince, both corporate and political.
The former Labour lord chancellor and justice secretary, Lord Falconer, told BBC Radio 4’s PM programme that he thought the time had come for Prince Andrew to step away from public duties.
Those close to Prince Andrew say that a withdrawal from public life is not under consideration.
But if support continues to seep from him, it will undermine his public position.
There was also further reaction to the prince’s BBC appearance.
Actress Rose McGowan – one of the most prominent figures of the #MeToo movement – told the Victoria Derbyshire programme she thought it was not a truthful interview.
“It’s also certainly not the mark of someone who is an empathetic character who cares about victims in any way,” she added.
The actress also said she wished more questions had been asked about Epstein’s alleged victims.
“We can’t forget there is human tragedy behind this… This has serious repercussions, serious ramifications and serious pain that is involved in this story.”
However, Alastair Campbell – Tony Blair’s ex-communications chief – said that although he thought the interview was a “mistake”, it was not “as bad as it is now being defined”.
Mr Campbell, who was another high-profile Briton to be named in Epstein’s 97-page “black book” of contacts, also told the Today programme that he met the financier on a visit to the US for a funeral and found him to be “a bit creepy”.
Prince Andrew’s BBC interview followed allegations by Virginia Giuffre, known at the time as Virginia Roberts, who claims the prince had sex with her on three occasions – the first when she was aged 17.
Prince Andrew “categorically” denied having had sexual contact with her.
In an extraordinary interview, which you can watch in full on BBC iPlayer in the UK or YouTube elsewhere in the world, the duke said:
He had investigations carried out to establish whether a photograph of him with Ms Giuffre was faked, but they were inconclusive
He would testify under oath if “push came to shove” and his lawyers advised him to
He was unaware of an arrest warrant against Epstein when he invited him to Princess Beatrice’s 18th birthday party at Windsor Castle
He does not regret his friendship with Epstein because of “the opportunities I was given to learn” from him about trade and business
Speaking out about his relationship with the financier had become almost “a mental health issue” for him
Oscar-winning actor Jon Voight, singer and musician Alison Krauss and mystery writer James Patterson are among the artists and philanthropists being honoured by President Donald Trump for their contributions to the arts or the humanities, the first recipients of prestigious national medals since Trump took office.
The White House announced four recipients of the National Medal of Arts and four of the National Humanities Medal in a statement on Sunday night.
Voight is one of Trump’s few vocal Hollywood backers, and has hailed him as “the greatest president of this century”.
Trump is also honouring the musicians of the US military, who frequently entertain at White House events.
He will award the medals during a ceremony at the White House on Thursday.
While the honours had been an annual affair during past administrations, they have not been awarded since Trump’s inauguration in January 2017.
The most recent arts or humanities medals were bestowed by President Barack Obama in September 2016.
The recipients of the National Medal of Arts are:
Alison Krauss, the bluegrass-country singer and musician, “for making extraordinary contributions to American music”. The White House misspelled her name in its release.
Sharon Percy Rockefeller “for being a renowned champion of the arts, generous supporter of charity, and a pioneer of new ideas and approaches in the field of public policy”.
The Musicians of the United States Military “for personifying excellence in music and service to country”.
Jon Voight “for his exceptional capacity as an actor to portray deeply complex characters”. He starred in Midnight Cowboy, the 1969 film that won an Academy Award for Best Picture, and he won the Best Actor Oscar for 1978’s Coming Home. He appears in the Showtime series Ray Donovan.
The recipients of the National Humanities Medal are:
The Claremont Institute “for championing the Nation’s founding principles and enriching American minds”.
Teresa Lozano Long “for supporting the arts and improving educational opportunities” through scholarships and philanthropy.
Patrick O’Connell, the chef at The Inn at Little Washington, “for being one of the greatest chefs of our time”.
James Patterson “for being one of the most successful American authors of our time”. He wrote a book about Jeffrey Epstein, the disgraced financier who killed himself while awaiting trial on charges of sexually abusing teenage girls. The book includes several references to Trump, including an account of the men’s falling out.
The National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities solicit candidates for the medals and compile proposed winners.
The White House, which sometimes adds its own nominees, traditionally approves and announces them before a presidential ceremony.
Trump has had an uneasy if not hostile relationship with many in the arts and the humanities who oppose his policies and have denounced his presidency.
He has been largely shunned by Hollywood and has skipped events like the annual Kennedy Center gala that is one of Washington’s premier social gatherings after some honourees said they would not attend if Trump was part of the ceremony.
North Korea calls Joe Biden a ‘rabid dog’ who should be ‘beaten to death with a stick’ in latest attack on Trump’s rival. #Biden#biden2020https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/10354955/north-korea-joe-biden-rabid-dog-beaten-death/ …
North Korea had lambasted Mr Biden for having the “temerity to dare slander the dignity” of its leader, Mr Kim.
“Rabid dogs like Biden can hurt lots of people if they are allowed to run about,” a statement, carried North Korea’s official KCNA news agency, said on Thursday. “They must be beaten to death with a stick.”
It is not clear what drew the ire of North Korea, though Mr Biden has been critical of the Trump-Kim summits this year and last.
In response to the North Korean jibe, Mr Biden said he saw such insults “as a badge of honour”.
In contrast, Mr Trump’s relationship with Mr Kim has been more amicable as he seeks to convince North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons through summitry rather than threats.
Obama has studiously avoided weighing in on the large field of Democratic candidates vying for the party’s 2020 presidential nomination. Behind closed doors on Friday, however, he tipped his hand a bit.
Sanders is preaching political revolution. Warren is urging “big systemic change”. The former president clearly had those two frontrunners in mind when he suggested such aggressive talk risks alienating the kind of middle-of-the-road voters necessary to defeat Donald Trump next year.
This shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise. Obama, despite being labelled a radical socialist by his conservative critics, governed as a pragmatic moderate. That created a fair amount of consternation of among progressives in his party, who thought he was one of their own when elected. Some view his presidency as a missed opportunity to enact fundamental structural reforms in the wake of the 2008 economic crisis.
This time around, they’re throwing their support behind Warren and Sanders and won’t appreciate being indirectly lectured by the former president.
The moderate-progressive division within the Democratic Party is very real, and it has the potential for combustion. Obama may not be picking a favourite candidate, but it looks like he’s picking sides.
Others not involved in the race for the nomination were more blunt.
In a tweet, Peter Daou, a former aide to Hillary Clinton, wrote: “Saying ‘Americans are moderate than these wild leftists’ is basically conceding that the far-right propaganda machine has prevailed.”
Mr Sanders, who describes himself as a democratic socialist and progressive, laughed and said: “Well, it depends on what you mean by tear down the system.”
“The agenda that we have is an agenda supported by the vast majority of working people,” he said. “When I talk about raising the minimum wage to a living wage, I’m not tearing down the system. We’re fighting for justice.”
Elizabeth Warren, another left-leaning frontrunner, struck a more conciliatory tone, choosing to praise Mr Obama’s trademark health care policy, the Affordable Care Act.