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CNN chief makes stunning claim on American journalism

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 09:59 AM PST

This may sound like fake news, but it is not. — CNN president Jeff Zucker was speaking at Business Insider's Ignition conference in New York on Thursday when he made the following statement: "The one thing I know for sure is that Donald Trump has made American journalism great again."

Zucker went on to state that he is proud of the quality of work currently coming out of news outlets, including CNN, The New York Times and The Washington Post.

The mainstream media magnate observed that ever since Trump was elected, CNN has seen an unprecedented "bump" in television and digital audience levels.

"CNN's been around for 37 years, this is the most-watched year in the history of CNN on television," he said, adding, “We could never have anticipated the audience level that we're seeing now and [on] the interest, in both our television and digital properties.”

Trump and CNN have clashed repeatedly throughout his campaign and presidency, with Trump often dismissing the network as "fake news."

Trump tweeted over Thanksgiving weekend that the international wing of CNN represents the United States "very poorly" to the rest of the world, and CNN’s response was to tweet back that it's Trump's job, not theirs, to represent the country.

"He is a terrible media critic," Zucker joked.

Earlier this week, CNN said it would boycott the White House Christmas party over the dysfunctional relationship, to which Trump responded, "Great."

The post CNN chief makes stunning claim on American journalism appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

CLAIM: Tillerson to be replaced in Trump administration shake-up

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 09:35 AM PST

A story published Thursday morning by the New York Times claims that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will be ousted within the next several weeks, and replaced by CIA director Mike Pompeo.

According to the report, Pompeo would then be replaced by Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), who has long supported President Trump on security issues. Anonymous White House officials reportedly confirmed that Sen. Cotton has said he would accept the CIA job if it was offered to him.

White House Chief of Staff John Kelly reportedly laid out proposal to oust Tillerson and move Pompeo into his role, according to the NY Times report.

Fox News reported that the administrative shake-up is planned to take effect in January.

Sen. Cotton's communications director, Caroline Tabler, reportedly told Fox News on Thursday that the senator's "focus is on serving Arkansans in the Senate."

If Cotton does leave his Senate seat, it would open up another Republican seat to be filled during the 2018 elections, whereas if he remains in the Senate, his position would be locked in until the 2020 election.

Tillerson was seen at the White House Thursday morning.

Reporters asked President Trump about the report that Tillerson would be leaving, during his meeting Thursday morning in the Oval Office with Crown Prince of Bahrain Salman bin Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa.

Trump not confirm the story, simply responding with, “He’s here. Rex is here.”

The post CLAIM: Tillerson to be replaced in Trump administration shake-up appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

‘Morning Joe’ hosts double down with new claims against Trump (video)

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 09:08 AM PST

The hosts of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” are claiming that President Donald Trump is in the “early stages of dementia” and, therefore, “mentally unfit” for office, on Thursday.

Everybody around Donald Trump knows he’s not stable,” reiterated Joe Scarborough, emphasizing “everybody” several times.

Co-host Mika Brzezinski said it’s time for Trump’s cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment, which allows for the president to be removed from office when "he is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office."

This latest round of Trump-bashing comes after President Trump published provocative tweets on Wednesday, aimed at NBC executives and implicating Scarborough in the mysterious death of a former staffer in 2001.

Trump tweeted: “So now that Matt Lauer is gone when will the Fake News practitioners at NBC be terminating the contract of Phil Griffin? And will they terminate low ratings Joe Scarborough based on the ‘unsolved mystery’ that took place in Florida years ago? Investigate!”

Brzezinski, on Thursday’s show, read from a “New York Daily News” editorial, which said, “Only those completely under his spell can deny what growing numbers of Americans have long suspected: The President of the United States is profoundly unstable. He is mad. He is by any honest layman’s definition mentally unwell.”

She went on to quote Times reporter Maggie Haberman, who said, “[S]omething is unleashed with him lately. I don’t know what’s causing it. I don’t know how to describe it.”

Among the most recent criticisms of Trump is his feud with British Prime Minister Theresa May over Trump’s retweeting of “conspiracy theories,” including videos posted by a British group that are said to show Muslims killing Christians or attacking Christian symbols.

Scarborough called Trump’s tweet about him yet another “cruel” conspiracy theory.

“And this comes in the midst of a nuclear showdown with North Korea,” Scarborough noted, adding, "So, I’m just kind of wondering — what’s the cabinet waiting for? What are Republicans in the House and Senate … because it’s never going to get more deadly serious than it is now.”

Scarborough predicted Thursday that "America will survive this,” but said, “[A]t this particular moment…we are headed toward a nuclear showdown…We are closer to a war on the Korean Peninsula than most Americans know.”

As for Trump’s tweet directed at Scarborough, his fiancé and co-host read the following personal statement:

“Today, the president crossed another deep and disturbing line with his attacks on Joe. The chief law enforcement officer of the United States of America advanced a false conspiracy theory to intimidate the press and cause a chilling effect on the First Amendment.

Joe and I are not intimidated. And his bizarre behavior contravenes both the Constitution and basic moral judgment.”

The post ‘Morning Joe’ hosts double down with new claims against Trump (video) appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

CNN producer fired over sexual harassment complaints

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 08:55 AM PST

A CNN producer has been dismissed after three women accused him of sexual harassment.

Teddy Davis, a senior producer on Jake Tapper's “State of the Union,” was let go due to "sexual misconduct," according to CNN’s Brian Stelter.

In a statement posted to Twitter, Stelter said they fired Davis after a "comprehensive investigation" which found that the producer's conduct "does not align with the standards and values" of the network. No further details about the allegations were released.

The Washington Post’s Paul Farhi shared the news in a tweet, and Tapper responded to Farhi's post, confirming the report.

Tapper tweeted: "This tweet is accurate. When CNN executives were told about these complaints, they reacted swiftly and appropriately, as they should. Workplaces need to be safe and I am fully supportive of CNN’s action."

The news came hours after NBC fired Matt Lauer, co-host of "Today," following sexual misconduct allegations. Since his firing, stories of his misconduct have emerged, including a video of Lauer making a sexually-laced comment to Meredith Vieira, one of his many former co-hosts.

Wednesday also saw two NPR employees ousted, after allegations were brought against Minnesota Public Radio's Garrison Keillor and National Public Radio's chief news editor David Sweeney. Keillor, the former host of "A Prairie Home Companion," was accused by one of his co-workers of inappropriate behavior. Sweeny resigned after at least three current and former NPR journalists accused him of sexual harassment.

The post CNN producer fired over sexual harassment complaints appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

‘Art of the Deal’ co-author makes bizarre allegation about Trump (video)

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 08:50 AM PST

Best known for his hatred of former employer Donald Trump, Tony Schwartz, co-author of Trump's book, "Trump: The Art of the Deal," conducted an interview on Wednesday in which he reiterated the latest liberal drum-beat to oust the 45th POTUS from office: the president is "mentally unfit.”

"What it means in simple terms is, he's losing his grip on reality," Schwartz told MSNBC's "The Beat with Ari Melber" when asked about Trump's reported suggestion that the infamous "Access Hollywood" tape may not be real.

President Trump reportedly told a senator earlier this year that the infamous recording in which he can be heard engaging in locker room talk may not be authentic; now, liberal journalists are jumping to report stories using unnamed advisers as the source.

According to a New York Times report published Saturday, Trump is open to the suggestion that the sexual misconduct allegations against Alabama GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore are false and politically motivated.

"His reality testing is really poor and I believe that's exactly what's going on," Schwartz stated.

The writer went on to describe a "dramatic change" having taken place in Trump since he co-authored the book with him.

"He is more limited in his vocabulary. He is further from, as I say, this connection to what is factual and real. He is more impulsive. He is more reactive. This is a guy in deep trouble," said Schwartz.

He went on to say that many employees at the White House are "hostages to a cult leader."

"When you watch Sarah Huckabee Sanders right now, you really feel as if you're watching somebody who is being brainwashed, or has been brainwashed," Schwartz observed.

The post 'Art of the Deal' co-author makes bizarre allegation about Trump (video) appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Trump appoints Kellyanne Conway to new role

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 08:45 AM PST

Opioids, such as Heroin, Fentanyl, and prescription painkillers, kill 71 Americans a day, according to federal data. This news led President Donald Trump to declare a national public health emergency in October, and now he’s named White House adviser Kellyanne Conway as the country’s “opioid czar.”

Attorney General Jeff Sessions made the announcement that Conway will lead the administration’s efforts to deal with the opioid epidemic in America on Wednesday.

“The President has made this a White House priority,” Sessions stated. “He’s asked her to coordinate and lead the effort from the White House.” He added that the former pollster is “exceedingly talented” and “understands messaging.”

Trump appointed New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to a White House panel on opioid abuse earlier in the year. Conway had been involved in that effort, as well.

Christie spoke at a hearing of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee in Baltimore, Md., on Tuesday. He said more funding is needed to fight the opioid crisis and complained that the $1 billion made available in the 21st Century Cures Act last year wasn’t enough.

"In New Jersey, we are spending $500 million," he said. "I am not, quite frankly, impressed with $1 billion from the federal government for the nation."

Conway’s new role was criticized by Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.

He recently declared that he opposed having Trump appoint an “opioid czar” to oversee efforts to tackle the epidemic. Instead, he said he thought the job should fall to the health and human services secretary.

The post Trump appoints Kellyanne Conway to new role appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Twitter staffer explains error that shut down Trump’s account (video)

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 07:36 AM PST

The former Twitter employee who shut down President Donald Trump's account for 11 minutes earlier this month has now stepped forward to explain what happened.

Bahtiyar Duysak owned up to his role in the Nov. 3 Trump outage Wednesday, in an interview with TechCrunch.

Duysak, who is of Turkish descent but was born and raised in Germany, called the outage a "mistake.”

“Everyone makes mistakes,” he said, noting that he never thought Trump’s Twitter account would actually get deactivated.

On the day of the outage, Duysak was assigned to the trust and safety division of customer support. The team is in charge of responding to alerts of offensive tweets, bad behavior, etc.

Duysak was at the end of his work and study visa and admitted to having had too much fun in America. “I was tired,” he recalled.

During his last day on the job, Duysak says someone had reported Trump's account. So, as his final act as a Twitter employee, he decided to simply start the process of deactivating the account before he signed off for the last time. He didn’t think much about it until several hours later, when he learned that the president’s account had been deactivated, sparking a media meltdown.

According to TechCrunch, Trump's account was supposed to be protected from deactivation over a Terms of Service violation.

Twitter initially blamed the outage on "human error," but later disclosed that a "Twitter customer support employee" was responsible, and promised to conduct “a full internal review."

Duysak told TechCrunch he isn’t worried about future repercussions from the incident, and he doesn't believe he did anything wrong. He’s just going to continue living “an ordinary life," he said.

The post Twitter staffer explains error that shut down Trump’s account (video) appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

BREAKING: Conyers hospitalized for stress-related symptoms (video)

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 07:18 AM PST

Following the sudden wave of sexual misconduct allegations against Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) that hit the news last week, the disgraced congressman has returned to his home in Detroit, Michigan.

On Thursday morning, two local Detroit news outlets reported that Conyers is now hospitalized due to stress from the “media assault.”

Political consultant Sam Riddle told reporters he had spoken to Conyers’ wife, Monica Conyers, about the congressman’s condition.

“I just spoke with Monica Conyers on the phone and we want you to know that the congressman is resting comfortably in an area hospital. He’s doing OK, as well as he can be expected for a gentleman that’s approaching 90 years of age. The congressman’s health is not what it should be and a lot of that is directly attributable to this media assault,” Riddle said.

"Monica Conyers, Mrs. Conyers, is by his side and we just ask, really, the nation to pray for this congressman that has done so much for the nation," Riddle told reporters. He did not reveal which hospital to which Conyers had been admitted.

Riddle slammed the trending hashtags as having added to the stress.

"These serial accusers are being given way too much credibility because (hashtag) #metoo is trending. The Congressman's contributions to the nation go far beyond any hashtags that are trending right now," he said. "We've dealt with these serial accusers before. Their names are not new to the Congressman or his family."

Conyers, 88, has served in the House since 1965, a total of 52 years, making him the longest-serving current member of the House of Representatives. He is also a founding member of the Congressional Black Caucus and has been touted as a civil rights icon.

On Sunday, he announced that he has stepped aside as a ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee.

Sources reportedly told Local 4 News, on Wednesday, that the 88-year-old Conyers will not run for re-election in 2018.

The post BREAKING: Conyers hospitalized for stress-related symptoms (video) appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Trump Tweets: North Korea, and NY Times as winner of fake news award

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 06:42 AM PST

President Donald J. Trump launched four new tweets on Thursday morning: two were about The New York Times, one was about North Korea, and the last one referred to the stock market.

In his first tweet, the president wrote: “The Failing @nytimes, the pipe organ for the Democrat Party, has become a virtual lobbyist for them with regard to our massive Tax Cut Bill. They are wrong so often that now I know we have a winner!”

When calling the news organization a “winner,” the president was referring to a tweet earlier this week about making an award for the news agency who best defines the meaning of “fake news.”

In his second tweet, Trump wrote: “The Failing @nytimes has totally gone against the Social Media Guidelines that they installed to preserve some credibility after many of their biased reporters went Rogue!”

In his third tweet, he shifted gears to a more important issue, North Korea: “The Chinese Envoy, who just returned from North Korea, seems to have had no impact on Little Rocket Man. Hard to believe his people, and the military, put up with living in such horrible conditions. Russia and China condemned the launch.”

The president was referring to the launch of a new missile by North Korea on Wednesday. Photos of the weapon were released by the North Korean government Thursday morning. See them by clicking here.

In his last tweet, the president focused on the surging stock market: “Stock Market hits new Record High. Confidence and enthusiasm abound. More great numbers coming out!”

The post Trump Tweets: North Korea, and NY Times as winner of fake news award appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

JUST IN: New sexual misconduct claim made against Sen. Franken

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 06:29 AM PST

The allegations against Democratic lawmaker Al Franken from Minnesota appear to get worse by the week. On Thursday morning, CNN broke the news that an Army veteran claims the disgraced senator groped her in 2003.

She is the 5th woman to report Franken for misconduct.

CNN reports that while the veteran was deployed in Kuwait, Franken cupped her breast during a photo op.


Stephanie Kemplin, 41, of Maineville, Ohio, is the fifth woman in two weeks to accuse Franken of inappropriate touching, and the second person to allege that such behavior took place while Franken was on a USO tour. Three of the five women have been identified by name.

Kemplin said while she was stationed in the Middle East during the Iraq War, she met Franken — at the time, a comedian and writer — as he was visiting American troops with the USO. A longtime fan of “Saturday Night Live,” Kemplin got in line to take a photo with Franken.

“When he put his arm around me, he groped my right breast. He kept his hand all the way over on my breast,” Kemplin said in an interview. “I’ve never had a man put their arm around me and then cup my breast. So he was holding my breast on the side.” Kemplin repeatedly used the word “embarrassed” to describe her immediate reaction at the time.

More on this story from CNN

The post JUST IN: New sexual misconduct claim made against Sen. Franken appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

DML: I Respond to 4 Interesting Emails You Sent Me

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 06:19 AM PST

Each day, I receive a wave of messages from our readers and viewers. Today, I respond to four of them. Also, I’ve posted a new photo from TEAM DML.

To send me a photo — and it can be of anything in your life — please use the WeTrustDML@gmail.com account. To send me a message, use the submit news button on either of our websites, DMLNews or DennisMichaelLynch.

During your program yesterday you started to tell us the story about you and Billy Baldwin but then you stopped.  Your mind goes so fast I think you forgot to tell us!  Will you please tell the story? This house loves DML.

DML: I will share the story today on “The Truth” and I will show a portion of the Alec Baldwin video I have referred to often… 11 a.m. EDT. Don’t miss it!

I don't know why but I turned on GMA this morning since I have stopped watching Fox.  In the first five minutes, they bashed on our president saying he put out bizarre tweets yesterday etc. I couldn't take it and turned the television off.  I promptly wrote GMA and told them they lost a viewer.  Dennis, I really hope the next sexual misconduct allegations that you hinted at yesterday are about George Stephanopolus!  He is a weasel and should be renamed biased democratic reporter.

DML: Nope, not him. That said, eventually, we will have morning programming. I am hoping it will happen in a few months. That’s why we are so thankful to everyone who buys our TEAM DML blankets. It provides so much help to build faster! Also, I want to thank everyone who has donated.

DML, thank Miss Mary for me! Got my blanket yesterday…love it! The timing is perfect as my son Luke leaves for Marine boot camp Dec 4th. Proud Momma but emotionally hard. My son is excited to serve his country. He will be a stellar Marine. God bless you and Miss Mary and team DML.

DML: Please thank your son for his service, and you should be proud. Send us a photo with your blanket, and of your son, too, if you will. We’ll post both.

I am very concerned about the North Korea missile program. Will you please discuss this more today rather than the bullsh*t about Matt Lauer? Fox is consumed by this story.

DML: I will address it again today on “The Truth,” and will be speaking about the new pictures.


The post DML: I Respond to 4 Interesting Emails You Sent Me appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

CLAIM: GOP campaign staffers hacked into House Republicans’ donor files

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 06:16 AM PST

Information about more than 200,000 donors to the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) was reportedly stolen from the National Republican Senate Committee (NRSC) by staffers who hacked into the group’s database.

"Everyone steals lists, but the fact that they did this behind the back of the NRCC shows they knew they were doing something wrong," one Republican fundraiser told Politico Wednesday.

"The people at the NRCC, who found out about this, are really pissed. They're supposed to be on the same team.”

The NRCC first became aware of the breach, which had been going on for months, in October.

The hackers seized valuable information such as email addresses, phone numbers, past donation history, and personal information fundraisers could use to entice donors to contribute to campaigns, according to the report.

"The individuals on these lists are guaranteed money," one staffer explained. "They will give. These are not your regular D.C. PAC list."

Chris Hansen, the executive director of the NRSC, called the story "utter nonsense.”

“The NRSC and the NRCC have a close working relationship and at the end of the day, our shared goal is growing our majorities for years to come,” he said in a statement.

NRCC head John Rogers backed up Hansen. "Chris Hansen is one of the most trustworthy people I have met in politics. If he says something, I am going to believe him."

Rogers added, "We meet regularly and share as much information as the law allows. We are both committed to helping each other grow our respective majorities."

Both committees have not publicly identified who these staff members were or if they've faced disciplinary action.

The post CLAIM: GOP campaign staffers hacked into House Republicans’ donor files appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

5 Big news reports trending Thursday morning

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 05:52 AM PST

It’s sizing up to be a busy news day. Below are just five of the bigger stories trending on Thursday morning.

DML News will be covering this and more as the day progresses. And don’t miss DML later this morning when he hosts “The Truth,” the most popular, political, LIVE show on Facebook.  o to Facebook.com/DMLdaily at 11 a.m. EDT.

1. North Korea releases chilling photos of the new missile it launched this week …  These are must-see photos with descriptions of how dangerous the N. Korean weapons are today. SEE PHOTOS

2. Matt Lauer issues an apology… The former “Today” show anchor speaks out after more scathing reports of sexual misconduct surfaced. READ STATEMENT.

3. AP source: Kushner questioned by Mueller's team about Flynn…. President Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner has been questioned by special counsel Robert Mueller's team of investigators about former national security adviser Michael Flynn, a person familiar with the investigation confirmed to The Associated Press.

The person said Wednesday that the questioning of Kushner earlier this month took about 90 minutes or less and was aimed, in part, at establishing whether Kushner had any information on Flynn that might be exculpatory. The person said multiple White House witnesses have been asked about their knowledge of Flynn, who was forced to resign from his national security adviser job at the White House in February after officials concluded he had misled them about his contacts with the Russian ambassador. READ MORE

4. Senate tax drama enters complicated end-game gambit... The Republican drive to push sweeping tax legislation through the U.S. Senate was hurtling toward a dramatic conclusion on Thursday, as Republican leaders pursued behind-the-scenes deals intended to secure enough votes for passage. READ MORE

5. Mueller’s investigation imperils American-Russian relations, jeopardizing lives… Fox News’ Gregg Jarrett explains why. READ MORE

The post 5 Big news reports trending Thursday morning appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

London’s Muslim mayor urges Theresa May to cancel Trump’s U.K. visit

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 05:36 AM PST

Sadiq Khan, the first Muslim mayor of London, issued a plea to Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May on Thursday, asking her to reject President Donald Trump.

Khan is pushing for Trump’s visit to the United Kingdom to be canceled over his retweets of videos showing Muslims committing acts of violence.

The videos were originally tweeted by an activist group known for rallying against Muslim extremists in the U.K. Khan said Trump has promoted a "vile, extremist group" and an official visit by him to Britain "would not be welcomed."

Prime Minister Theresa May's official spokesman said Trump’s retweet was wrong to do, on Wednesday.

In response, Trump urged May to focus on "the destructive Radical Islamic Terrorism that is taking place within the United Kingdom," rather than on him.

The post London’s Muslim mayor urges Theresa May to cancel Trump’s U.K. visit appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

More complaints lodged against Matt Lauer

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 05:29 AM PST

It appears as though the fallout has just begun for disgraced NBC “Today” show host Matt Lauer after he was fired from his job amid allegations of sexual harassment. According to news reports Thursday, NBC has received at least two additional complaints of Lauer’s inappropriate behavior.

The New York Times reports that one of the new allegations comes from a female former NBC employee who alleges that in 2001, Lauer summoned her to his office, locked the door by pressing a button at his desk, and sexually assaulted her.

The woman told the Times that she passed out with her pants pulled down and had to be taken to a nurse after waking up on the floor of Lauer’s office.

The woman, who came forward with her story after the news broke of Lauer’s firing, did not report the incident at the time; she said this was because she felt helpless and concerned for her career. She also said she was ashamed of the encounter.

Though the woman did not formally report the incident at the time, she shared details with her then-husband and a friend, both of whom confirmed the story

In a memo to staff Wednesday, NBC News chairman Andrew Lack stated that the network had reason to believe that more inappropriate conduct might be uncovered.

“On Monday night, we received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace by Matt Lauer," Lack said in a memo to the staff. "While it is the first complaint about his behavior in the over 20 years he's been at NBC News, we were also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident."

Variety reported Wednesday that previous complaints against Lauer were ignored by the network. Women “complained to executives at the network about Lauer’s behavior, which fell on deaf ears given the lucrative advertising surrounding ‘Today,'” the report said.

Lauer had been with the “Today” show since 1994.

The post More complaints lodged against Matt Lauer appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

North Korean government releases chilling photos of new missile and launch (see photos)

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 05:21 AM PST

At the bottom of this article is a series of photographs released by the North Korean government on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017.  The photos, which are watermarked with "KCNA" (Korean Central News Agency), allegedly depict the rogue nation’s recent missile launch that shocked the world on Wednesday.

The photographs, which cannot be independently verified because no reporters or news agencies were granted access to the actual launch, shows what the North Korean government calls the Hwasong-15 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

According to the AP, the new ICBM is bigger, more advanced and comes with a domestically-made mobile launcher that will make it harder than ever to pre-emptively destroy.

The AP points out that the new weapon, although larger, may be restricted in its reach because of its size, stating, “[T]here's a potentially major catch: it might not have the power to go much farther than the West Coast if it is loaded down with a real nuclear warhead, not a dummy like the one it carried in its test launch on Wednesday.”

Using the photos as a reference, it appears the Hwasong-15 is much bigger than the Hwasong-14 which North Korea tested twice during the summer.

In a tweet just after the photos were published, Michael Duitsman, a researcher at the Center for Nonproliferation Studies in Monterey, California, said: "This is very big missile … And I don't mean 'Big for North Korea.' Only a few countries can produce missiles of this size, and North Korea just joined the club."

Size is important because a missile targeting the United States would have to carry a lot of fuel. Duitsman also suggested the new ICBM appears to have a different engine arrangement and improved steering.

In its announcement about the launch Wednesday, North Korea boasted repeatedly that the Hawasong-15 was fired from a domestically-made erector-launcher vehicle. Its photos back that up, according to the AP.

In short, this is a significant advancement because it enables North Korea to launch the missile from any location, thus, making it difficult for the United States or an ally to destroy the missile before its launch. Another point of consideration is that it shows North Korea has developed the ability to create the launcher on its own. With new sanctions put in place, North Korea no longer requires the assistance of foreign nations.

Finally, there is the payload. The AP writes:

North Korea claims the Hwasong-15 can carry a "super-heavy" nuclear payload to any target in the mainland United States. The re-entry vehicle, that nose cone in the photo, does indeed look quite large. But the heavier the load the shorter the range. Michael Elleman, a leading missile expert, has suggested in the respected 38 North blog that Hwasong-15′s estimated 13,000-kilometer (8,100 mile) range assumes a payload of around 150 kilograms (330 pounds), which is probably much lighter than any real nuclear payload the North can produce. To get to the West Coast, the North needs to keep that weight down to 500 kilograms (1,100 pounds). Whether it can do that remains questionable. "Kim Jong Un's nuclear bomb must weigh less than 350 kilograms (800 pounds) if he expects to strike the western edges of the US mainland," Elleman estimated. "A 600-kilogram (1,300-pound) payload barely reaches Seattle."

Below are the photos. Take note of the last photo with Kim standing underneath the missile.

The post North Korean government releases chilling photos of new missile and launch (see photos) appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Matt Lauer issues statement (read statement)

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 04:57 AM PST

Matt Lauer issued a statement on the heels of his firing from the “Today” show after accusations surfaced of sexual misconduct.

In a statement read by his former “Today” co-hosts, Lauer said, "There are no words to express my sorrow and regret for the pain I have caused others by words and actions. To the people I have hurt, I am truly sorry. As I am writing this I realize the depth of the damage and disappointment I have left behind at home and at NBC.

Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized, but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed. I regret that my shame is now shared by the people I cherish dearly.

Repairing the damage will take a lot of time and soul searching and I'm committed to beginning that effort. It is now my full time job. The last two days have forced me to take a very hard look at my own troubling flaws. It's been humbling. I am blessed to be surrounded by the people I love. I thank them for their patience and grace.”

A new report in The New York Times claims Lauer had sex with a married woman at work until she passed out on the floor. And in another report from TMZ, a video surfaced of Lauer speaking about a woman bending over on set, and how it was a great view from his vantage. Watch video.

The post Matt Lauer issues statement (read statement) appeared first on Dennis Michael Lynch.

Bill Clinton accusers demand Franken’s resignation (video)

Posted: 30 Nov 2017 04:44 AM PST

Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) had an unexpected group of visitors in his office Wednesday – and they were not welcomed. The group was there to demand his resignation and included a woman who made accusations of harassment against Franken, as well as others who have made allegations against former President Bill Clinton.

Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey, and Leslie Millwee all accused Clinton of sexual misconduct. They went to see Franken, joined by Melanie Morgan, a journalist who says Franken harassed her 17 years ago.

The group stormed Franken’s office on Capitol Hill to demand that he resign, and live-streamed the incident on social media (see video below).

Franken has been accused of sexual harassment by Leeann Tweeden, a radio host and former sports commentator, who said Franken groped her on one occasion, and forcefully put his tongue in her mouth on another. A second accuser says Franken grabbed her buttock when they were taking a photo together.

According to Morgan, Franken met her in 2000 during a taping of Bill Maher’s “Politically Incorrect.” They disagreed about policy and budgets, Morgan said, and Franken wouldn’t let the disagreement go.

Morgan says he not only stalked her back to the green room that day, but he also got her phone number and repeatedly called her. Morgan said after receiving daily calls from Franken, she threatened to report him to the authorities.

On Wednesday, she and the Clinton accusers descended on Capitol Hill in search of Franken’s office, saying they were tired of politicians getting away with harassment in any form.

"We are at Al Franken's office, and we're hoping that we get to see him," Broaddrick said before the group entered the office.

"I don't think we'll get anywhere, but at least we can say we were here," Willey said.

The group asked to speak to Franken, and Morgan gave a long statement recalling her allegations against him, but the senator never came out to speak with the group. They left after police arrived on the scene, but not before they captured plenty of attention and stacked up thousands of viewers.

The women later appeared on “Hannity” to tell their stories to host Sean Hannity (see video below).

Earlier Wednesday, Broaddrick, Willey and Millwee held a news conference, calling on Franken and Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) – who has also been accused of sexual misconduct – to resign from their posts.

"They are not sorry. Their apologies are weak. The only reason they apologized is because they were caught," Willey said.

The women also demanded an end to the millions of taxpayers’ dollars spent to cover up harassment allegations with settlement payments, including sexual harassment claims against lawmakers.

Millwee declared that she’s tired of her tax dollars going to Clinton. "I'm tired of paying Bill Clinton's pension for what he did to me and all of these other women. I know there are many, many more like me," she claimed.

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