Sen. Pat Roberts' Republican primary challenger confronts him during campaign stop, challenges him to debate
Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) encountered an interesting person Wednesday during a local campaign stop in Emporia: His opponent in next week's Republican primary, Tea Party candidate Milton Wolf, who was there with a group of his own supporters to directly confront Roberts, The Emporia Gazette reports.
"We know you've told Kansans, you've given your word you would give a debate," said Wolf, right after a friendly handshake. "You've said it multiple times, in multiple places. You tell us that you're tough and tested and trusted. And I want you to keep your word, I want you to debate. I think Kansans deserve it."
Roberts responded: "Listen, Milton — Milton, Milton, this is not the time. We have a regularly scheduled event, a listening tour event. This is not the way to do that, this is not the time."
"When would be the time, Senator? Because I'll go anywhere you'd like," Wolf answered, continuing as Roberts began walking away. "You've given your word to debate; let's just debate."
Perhaps there just might not be any debate in time for Tuesday.
In addition to be a Tea Party candidate, Wolf is also a distant cousin of President Obama himself — though he's definitely not a fan. A recent SurveyUSA poll for the Republican primary gave Roberts a solid lead over Wolf, 50 percent to 30 percent. The likely Democratic nominee is Chad Taylor, the district attorney of Shawnee County, the area that includes Topeka. The last time Democrats won a Senate race in Kansas was all the way back in 1932, during the landslide first election victory of President Franklin Roosevelt. But very interestingly, the same SurveyUSA poll also showed Taylor in close races right now with either Roberts or Wolf. --Eric Kleefeld
As the jury president of this year's Berlin International Film Festival, it was up to Meryl Streep to answer the press' questions about the all-white jury panel. However, Streep dismissed the criticism on Thursday by telling reporters that, "We're all Africans, really."
The other members of the jury are German actor Lars Eidinger, British film critic Nick James, French photographer Brigitte Lacombe, British actor Clive Owen, Italian actress Alba Rohrwacher, and Polish director Malgorzata Szumowska, The Associated Press reports. Together, Streep and the jury will award Europe's first major film prize of the year, the Golden Bear, as well as several Silver Bear awards.
"There is a core of humanity that travels right through every culture, and after all we're all from Africa originally," Streep said. "Berliners, we're all Africans really."
Streep also defended herself against an Egyptian reporter who questioned if she understood films from North Africa or the Arab world by saying, "I've played a lot of different people from a lot of different cultures."
Additionally, Streep insisted she was committed to the inclusion of "all genders, races, ethnicities, religions."
"This jury is evidence that at least women are included and in fact dominate this jury, and that's an unusual situation in bodies of people who make decisions," Streep said. "So I think the Berlinale is ahead of its game." Jeva Lange
Being the first black president has had political advantages as well as disadvantages, President Obama said in an interview with the L.A. Times released Thursday.
"I have no doubt there are people who voted against me because of race…or didn’t approve of my agenda because of race," he remarked. "I also suspect there are a bunch of people who are excited or voted for me because of the notion of the first African American president…Those things cut both ways."
Returning to the issue at another point in the conversation, Obama conceded that "there are pockets of the country where some dog whistles blow and there’s underlying racial fears that may be exploited." But at the same time, he said, "You’ve got a whole generation of kids growing up where the first president they’ve known is an African American. Even if they’re hearing their parents say he’s terrible, it kind of seeps in that it’s not a crazy thing. So that sometime later, if there’s a Hispanic, or a woman or another African American, that won’t seem as exceptional. These things change over time." Bonnie Kristian
When the Secret Service is talking about Sen. Bernie Sanders, they refer to him as 'Intrepid.' The Democratic presidential candidate's code name surfaced Thursday in a report by The Bill Press Show, just weeks after Sanders' request to receive Secret Service protection was approved by the Department of Homeland Security.
The socialist senator's name is reportedly a reflection of his resolute stand against Wall Street and the establishment. Though Sanders' campaign has yet to confirm his code name, The Bill Press Show says that it's an "absolute fact," citing a source.
Sanders is the fourth candidate in the 2016 race to get Secret Service protection. Fellow Democratic contender Hillary Clinton, code name "Evergreen," also receives protection, as do Republican candidates Donald Trump ("Mogul") and Ben Carson ("Eli"). Becca Stanek
Hillary Clinton will be scrambling to make up lost ground on Bernie Sanders in the sixth Democratic debate Thursday evening — yes, a rare weeknight debate.
After a close shave in Iowa and a double-digit loss in New Hampshire, Clinton will likely have her claws out even as her camp has tried to curb expectations ahead of the Feb. 20 Nevada caucuses. While many still believe Nevada is ripe for Clinton's taking due to its large number of minority voters who tend to support her, Sanders has upped his own rhetoric on race in recent days and could prove to once again be tough to beat.
The abstract expressionist Mark Rothko is the kind of artist whose work you look at and go, "Well, I could make that." Unfortunately for two unsuspecting art collectors, a Chinese forger did just that — and the couple was duped into buying the fake for $8.5 million from the famous New York art gallery Knoedler & Co.
— The Telegraph (@Telegraph) February 11, 2016
On Wednesday, Domenico and Eleanore De Sole reached a settlement with Knoedler after they had requested $25 million in damages for purchasing the fake, The New York Times reports. The couple had accused Knoedler and its former president, Ann Freedman, of a "racketeering scheme" that sold over 30 forgeries supposedly by artists like Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning. The exact terms of the settlement were not disclosed.
The Knoedler gallery shuttered in 2011 after 165 years in the business. Several other lawsuits were brought against the gallery for forged works, although this one was the only one to go to trial. Jeva Lange
Bernie Sanders scored a second big win just one day after dominating the New Hampshire primary Tuesday. Within 24 hours of the Granite State's polls closing, the Vermont senator had topped his $6 million fundraising goal and raised $6.4 million, the Sanders campaign confirmed late Wednesday. The average campaign contribution was just $34, The Hill reports.
Sanders reached his goal in record speed. A mere 18 hours after beating Democratic rival Hillary Clinton, 60 percent to 38 percent, The Hill reports that Sanders was already well on his way to meeting his goal with $5.2 million raised. His fundraising momentum prompted his campaign to push the goal to $7 million. "I'll be honest — right now, the math looks difficult to raise another $1 million today," Sanders' campaign manager, Jeff Weaver, said in an email to supporters. "But I think it's important for us to try, and not just because there are 14 primaries and caucuses over the next three months."
There are nervous rumblings in the Clinton camp about the upcoming Nevada caucuses on Feb. 20 — nervousness that some think the campaign might be intentionally stoking. "The question is whether their anxiety about the caucuses is real or carefully orchestrated to make sure that Clinton can claim a triumph even if she narrowly wins a state where she has enjoyed a huge polling lead for months," The Hill writes.
Indeed, with Sanders pulling strong support in both New Hampshire and Iowa, some wonder if Nevada — "Clinton country" — could be a tight competition, too.
"A month ago, who would have thought this would be such a competitive race? Nevada will either be a potential firewall or a potential tiebreaker," Sen. Harry Reid's senior strategist Rebecca Lambe told The New York Times.
The demographics of Nevada are starkly different from Iowa and New Hampshire — two states with mainly white voters. In Nevada, approximately 20 percent of the Democratic voters are Hispanic, and 13 percent African-American. Clinton tends to hold a stronger appeal in minority communities.
"For reasons I don't understand, the Clinton campaign seems to be downplaying chances in Nevada. As far as I'm concerned, it's tailor-made for a Clinton victory," another of Reid's strategists, Jim Manley, said. Jeva Lange