Super Bowl Upset, Not a Serious Document

Sunny in Philadelphia: Philadelphia Eagles backup quarterback Nick Foles came out of last night’s Super Bowl as a star, even catching a pass for a touchdown in a trick play. The Eagles ended up winning their first-ever Super Bowl, upsetting the New England Patriots 41-33.

Foles had entered this season disappointed with his career and giving it one last chance. He became one of those stories sportswriters love.

The Patriots stumbled from the start, dropping as far as 12 points behind in the first half. Kicker Stephen Gostkowski missed a field goal and an extra-point, costing New England 4 crucial points. The Eagles were up by 10 at halftime.

New England pulled one point ahead midway through the 4th quarter, but with just 2:12 left on the clock, Philadelphia knocked the ball out of the hands of New England quarterback Tom Brady for what became a game-winning turnover. Philadelphia scored, taking an eight-point lead. On the last play of the game, Brady hung one up for 6-6 receiver Rob Gronkowski in the end zone, but he was buried by defenders.

In Philadelphia, crazed fans hit the downtown streets, turning over a car, breaking windows, and tearing down a hotel awning. It’s Philadelphia.

Probable Cause: New York Democratic Rep. Jerry Nadler issued a scathing rebuttal to the so-called “Nunes memo,” saying that it is “clearly not a serious document.” Nadler picked legal and logical holes in the Nunes memo that claims FBI wrongdoing in obtaining a surveillance warrant of Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

Nadler says, “We should not lose sight of a critical and undisputed fact: the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court found probable cause to believe that Carter Page — a member of the Trump campaign’s foreign policy team — was an agent of the Russian government.”

The release of the Nunes memo has set many conservatives on fire, changing the conversation from election-influencing by Russia to malfeasance by the FBI. But California Rep. Devin Nunes selectively picked facts in his argument that the FBI was biased in its effort to seek a warrant against Page. Nadler declares, “The Nunes memo shows that the House Republicans are now part and parcel to an organized effort to obstruct the Special Counsel’s investigation.”

The Nunes memo complains that the FBI relied on a document called the “Steele Dossier,” prepared by former British intelligence agent Christopher Steele on behalf of an American opposition research company and the Democratic Party. Nadler says, “Amazingly, the Nunes memo does not provide a single shred of evidence that any aspect of the Steele dossier is false or inaccurate in any way. “

Nadler says in his memo, “The Russian government waged a massive campaign to discredit our election. Carter Page appears to have played a role in that effort. The FBI has a responsibility to follow these facts where they lead. The Nunes memo would have us sweep this all under the rug. And for what, exactly?”

Railroaded: The Amtrak passenger train that crashed early yesterday morning had been diverted onto a siding in South Carolina where a CSX freight train was parked, the railroad said yesterday. Amtrak blames CSX for the mistake. Two Amtrak employees were killed, and 118 people injured in the third fatal crash for Amtrak since December.

Groped Out: Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY, has rescinded the honorary degree it gave to former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly, citing the accusations of sexual harassment that cost O’Reilly his job. Although O’Reilly has always denied the accusations against him, a Marist statement says, “To many his reported payments of tens of millions of dollars and dismissal by Fox News lend credibility to the allegations against him.” So they took back their degree.

O’Reilly graduated from Marist in 1971 and was given an honorary degree at the 2001 Commencement ceremony. In 2015 he donated $1 million toward an endowed scholarship.

Juge Scandal: Fox News talking head Dan Bongino said the claim that the FBI misused its power to obtain intelligence surveillance warrants “is now the most consequential – no question – political scandal in American history.”

Political consultant Frank Luntz responded via Twitter, “How soon we forget about the Whiskey Ring scandal of 1875.”

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Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Page Two

Jaw Meet Floor

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The Small President

Thursday, December 15, 2016

The Cuba Diaries

Sunday, March 13, 2016

An Alphabet of Maladies

Friday, February 26, 2016

The Healthcare Confusion Act

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Freedom from Speech

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Too Big to Fire

Friday, June 19, 2015

More Probable Than Not

Thursday, May 14, 2015

It's Been Said

" 'The enemy of the people,'" was what the president of the United States called the free press in 2017 ... It is a testament to the condition of our democracy that our own president uses words infamously spoken by Josef Stalin to describe his enemies. It bears noting that so fraught with malice was the phrase 'enemy of the people,' that even Nikita Khrushchev forbade its use, telling the Soviet Communist Party that the phrase had been introduced by Stalin for the purpose of 'annihilating such individuals' who disagreed with the supreme leader."
 
Arizona republican Sen. Jeff Flake speaking on the floor today.

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